This Saturday, September 29, 2018, marks National Seat Check Saturday day across America. It’s part of 2018 Child Passenger Safety Week, a reminder to make sure kids are in their right car seat and that the seat is installed properly. It’s easier said than done, because according to the National Highway Safety Administration nearly half of all car seats are installed incorrectly.
2018 Child Passenger Safety Week
NHTSA’s Child Passenger Safety Week started on September 23 and runs through the 29th, on National Seat Check Saturday. You can find a list of events by entering your location on the NHTSA website here.
The NHTSA stresses that it is not just about making sure children are in the correct car seat that is properly installed, but also that it is registered with its manufacturer to ensure you receive important safety updates like recalls.
Car Seats Reduce Injuries In Crashes
Car seats and boosters are one of the easiest ways to keep your child safe and, when installed correctly, car seats can reduce the risk of fatal injury in a crash by 71 percent for infants and by 54 percent for toddlers. Unfortunately, many parents install their child seats incorrectly. Among children under 5, car seats saved an estimated 328 lives in 2016 alone. An additional 370 more children could have survived if they had been properly restrained in a car seat or booster seat.
Vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death for children. From 2012 to 2016, there were 3,268 children under 13 killed while riding in passenger vehicles, and these tragic figures have been increasing steadily since 2014. More than one-third of those children were not buckled at all. These deaths are 100-percent preventable. If you have a car seat in your vehicle, visit a Certified Child Passenger Safety Technician in your community to double-check that it’s properly installed. You can use this simple search tool to find a car seat inspection station near you right now or visit a car seat check in your community on National Seat Check Saturday on September 29.
Registering Car Seats
It’s also critical that all car seats are registered with their manufacturers in case of a safety recall. Every seat purchased comes with a postage-paid registration card that you can drop in the mail. You can also register your seat online. This simple, but critical, step will help ensure that you will be notified if a defect is discovered with your car seat so it can be repaired or the seat can be replaced to keep your child safe.
Car Seat Guidelines
If your child exceeds the weight or height limits for their forward-facing car seat, it may be time for a booster seat. This should be the next step before a child is ready to wear an adult seat belt alone. Check to make sure you’re using the proper car seat, booster seat, or seat belt for your growing child. No matter what, everyone in your vehicle needs to be buckled up correctly to keep them safe in a crash—every trip, every time. The car should never move until everyone is buckled.
You can see the Car Pro comprehensive guide to child safety seats here:
Photo Credit: Nestor Rizhniak/Shutterstock.com