Car seats provide children, the most vulnerable of passengers, with much-needed extra protection in the event of a car accident. However, when they’re not installed correctly, car seats don’t protect children the way that they are designed to. And, unfortunately, according to a recent study, many parents continue to have difficulties installing car seats properly.
The New York Times blog recently discussed the study, which was conducted to determine the effectiveness of car seats. The study was based on examinations of 79,000 inspections of car seats installed by parents of children. According to the study results, the top tethers of forward facing car sets were used only 2/3 of the time and even when the tethers were being used, only 59% of the tethers were being used properly.
The failure to use the tethers is important because the top tether straps, when used correctly, greatly limit a child’s movement in the event of a car crash, thus reducing the child’s injuries.
As explained in the New York Times blog post, there are a number of resources available for parents to assist them with proper car seat installation:
Guidelines can be found on the Safe Kids USA Web site or on the Web site for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Car-seat checkups are being conducted throughout National Child Passenger Safety Week, Sept. 18 to 24. Click here to find one of the more than 400 scheduled checkup events.
If you’re a parent, it would be a good idea to take advantage of these free resources. Car accidents are the leading cause of death for children aged 3-14, so any steps that you can take to protect your children would be more than worthwhile.