One of the first things I added to my baby registry list when I was expecting my firstborn was a great car seat. Even back then I knew how important they would be in keeping my son as safe as possible during our drives hither and yon. I’ve gone on to have four more children after him, and car seat safety standards have improved so much just over the course of the past 12 years.
Child Passenger Safety Week
If you haven’t checked out the safety standards and latest research recently, this is the perfect time to do so! Child Passenger Safety Week (September 17-23, 2017) is a great time to brush up on car seat safety tips and make sure your child is in the right seat, with the right fit and installation.
During Child Passenger Safety Week, more than 1,000 events are expected in 45 states across the country to raise awareness for proper car seat installation and usage. The week culminates with “Seat Check Saturday,” where Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians will help parents and caregivers make sure their car seats are installed correctly. In most cases, this service is FREE.
I remember learning all about car seats when my baby was born, and even talking it over with my midwife before we left the house for the first time. When my firstborn was born, the age limits were very different. Now I have my almost-6 and 7-year-old STILL in car safety seats! It can be hard to stay on top of all the details by myself, so I’m grateful for resources like NHTSA.gov/TheRightSeat, which has videos about how to install car seats and booster seats correctly and guides to picking the right seat by age and size.
Here’s a video that has been helpful for me:
The right car seat can make all the difference in a crash. Every 33 seconds* a child under 13 is involved in a car crash in the United States. Car seats, if used correctly, can dramatically reduce the risk of death or injury. But over half of car seats are either installed or used incorrectly, and 1 in 3 children killed in car crashes in 2015 was not in a car seat, booster seat, or seat belt at the time of the crash.
Resources for Car Seat Safety
To make sure you have the right seat for your child, visit NHTSA.gov/TheRightSeat, or find a Child Passenger Safety Week event in your area. During Child Passenger Safety Week, many communities will have Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians on-hand to provide education on how to use car seats, booster seats, and seat belts for children. To find events near you, including free car seat checks, visit bit.ly/CPSTech.
*According to 2015 data from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).