There’s NOT TOO Many Times to repeat the right car seat safety tips. Buckling up your baby or toddler is a must. The majority of parents do it. The question is “Are you doing it correctly? The Ad Council has launched their public education campaign about car seat safety. It is important to educate ourselves about different car seats and check out their safety. Different brands have different quality controls, and we, consumers, need to be aware of that.
But once we have chosen a safe car seat for our baby, we need to learn HOW-TO install that seat correctly into the car. I would like to go through those tips with you again. It is always good to refresh what we know and what may be missing out from our mental notes.
First, take a look at the sad statistics. Knowing the facts sharpens our awareness and makes our memory more powerful as we learn with the help of our emotions and feelings.
Gruesomely sad facts about car seat safety in this country.
- Car crashes are a leading cause of death for children 1 to 13 years old
- Every 33 seconds in 2015 a child under 13 was involved in a car crash in the United States
- 1 in 3 children killed* in car crashes was not in a car seat, booster seat, or seat belt at the time of the crash
- Car seats, if used correctly, can dramatically reduce the risk of fatality or injury. But over half of car seats are misused in a way that could reduce their effectiveness
- Many parents and caregivers move their children to the next restraint type (car seat, booster seat, seat belt) too soon. That’s why it’s important to get the facts about what’s safest for your child’s age and size
What you and I and everyone who is transporting a baby or a toddler in their car do to ensure that we all arrive in one piece every single time.
Follow these Simple Car Seat Safety Tips:
- Check age and size: Find a car seat that fits your child. As children grow, how they fit in their car seat will change. Make sure the car seat you purchase is designed to fit your child’s current size and age and allows room for growth.
- Read the manual: Before installing your car seat in your vehicle and putting your child in the car seat, read the manufacturer’s instructions so you know how your car seat works.
- Test it in your car: Not all car seats fit in all vehicles so test the car seat you plan to buy to make sure it fits correctly in your vehicle.
- Register it: Register your car seat and booster seat HERE so you will be informed if there is a safety recall on your model.
- All-in-one Seats: “All-in-one” seats can be a great option for your child as they grow. They offer you the advantage of using the same seat for the following positions: rear-facing, forward-facing with harness, then booster seat. These seats typically have higher height and weight limits for the rear-facing position, allowing you to keep your child rear-facing for a longer period of time, which safety experts strongly recommend.
- Get it checked: Be certain you’ve installed your car seat correctly by having it checked by a certified child passenger safety technician. Bring the car seat instructions AND the vehicle owner’s manual with you to a car seat inspection appointment!
- General age guidelines: Remember, the best car seat is the one that fits your child properly, is easy to use, and fits in your vehicle correctly. The information here can help you choose the right seat for your child. Keep in mind that:
- Children under age 1 should always ride in a rear-facing car seat.
- Children ages 1-3 should be kept in a rear-facing seat until they reach the car seat’s top height or weight limit.
- Keep your child in the back seat until at least age 13.