The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) created the National Child Passenger Safety Week initiative to promote awareness about child car safety. It runs the third week of September. In 2015, it’s from September 13 through 19. This week is an excellent opportunity to evaluate your child’s seat and ensure you’re using it correctly to reduce your child’s risk of injury in a car accident.
Car Seat Safety Tips
Traffic accidents are the leading cause of the death for children ages one to 13, according to the NHTSA. As a parent, it’s up to you to promote safe practices when your child is in or near a vehicle.
Below are some tips to follow in observance of National Child Passenger Safety Week.
- Make sure you are using the correct kind of car seat for your child’s age and weight. Children under one should use a rear-facing seat. When your child is one-year-old, you can put him or her in a forward-facing seat until he or she has outgrown the manufacture’s specified weight limits. Next, use a booster seat he or she is big enough to use a regular seat belt. Note, children should sit in the back seat until they reach age 13.
- Ensure your car seat is compatible with your vehicle. Also, check the manufacturer’s car seat directions to ensure you’ve installed it properly. You can also call your local fire department or police department for help; many of them offer free child car seat inspections.
- Before you purchase a new seat, check it’s label to make sure it meets federal safety standards.
- Car seat safety isn’t the only thing to consider when keeping your kids safe. You’ll also want to be aware of and avoid dangers in and around your vehicle, too. Localized hazards include backovers, seat belt entanglement, heat strokes, trunk entrapment, and rollaway vehicles.
- Check out the NHTSA safercar.gov Parents Central portal for a ton of helpful free information, such as car seat safety ratings and how to get involved with the National Child Passenger Safety Week initiative.
- You can also use the materials in the NHTSA campaign toolkit. There, you’ll car seat safety checklists, PSAs, images for social media, car seat installation videos, and helpful guides for parents, like car emergency kit lists.
Additional Resources for Parents
You might also enjoy some of the materials we have on our website. Our firm, Cordisco & Saile LLC in Pennsylvania, handles injury cases of all nature, including child injuries related to traffic accidents and defective car seats. Feel free to peruse the posts in our article library and on our car accidents blog. If you are ever in need of legal counsel after an accident, you can call our office to schedule a free consultation: 215-642-2335.