|September 19, 2013
Celebrate National Child Passenger Safety Week
A car crash can happen at anytime, often when least expected by the driver. Securing your children properly in age and size appropriate child safety seats, in the back seat of your vehicle, is the most effective thing you can do to protect them in the event of a crash. In fact, in motor vehicle crashes, child safety seats reduce the risk of fatal injury by 71 percent for infants and by 54 percent for toddlers.
The good news is that a majority of parents buckle up their children in child safety seats, booster seats or seat belts. However, according to the US Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), nearly 3 out of 4 child safety seats are not used properly, which is a huge risk when traveling.
That’s where NHTSA’s Child Passenger Safety (CPS) Week can help. This annual campaign focuses on increasing awareness of these issues and provides parents and caregivers with resources and information to better protect children from motor vehicle crash risks.
For a child safety seat to do its job right, it has to be:
• Appropriate for your child’s age and size,
• Installed properly in your vehicle and
• Adjusted to fit your child securely.
If you’re a parent or caregiver, don’t miss the opportunity to have your child’s safety seat inspected during Child Passenger Safety Week this September 15 – 22. At Wal-Mart’s September 21 “Safety Days” in Polson, a child passenger safety check station will be set up in the parking lot from 11am until 3pm. Certified child passenger safety technicians will inspect your child’s safety seat and provide hands-on advice and instruction.
Even if you’ve had your child’s seat inspected before, it never hurts to have a refresher. So don’t miss out on inspections. If you are unable to make the Saturday check event on the 21st of September, feel free to drop by the Lake County Health Department at 802 Main St. in Polson, where certified CPS techs are available to check your child’s car seat and answer any questions you may have. You can find free inspection sites in other Montana cities online at www.nhtsa.gov
Remember: All child passengers under age 13 should ride securely restrained in the back seat, where they are safest—every trip, every time.
Visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Stt2vQ85FG0 for a YouTube link showing a Montana family surviving a rollover crash, or view below:
From Erin Mulegin and Diana Schwab of the Lake County Buckle Up Coalition.