Child Passenger Safety Week is September 18-24, 2016 so it is a great time to review these tips to keep your most precious cargo safe.
1. Seventy-three percent of car seats are not used or installed correctly, so before you hit the road, check your car seat. Here's a quick car seat checklist to help you out. It takes only 15 minutes. If you are having even the slightest trouble, questions or concerns, certified child passenger safety technicians are able to help or even double check your work.
2. Learn how to install your car seat for free. The Safe Kids organization hosts car seat inspection events across the country where certified technicians can help you learn to install your car seat properly. They will teach you so that you can always be sure your car seat is used correctly. Click here to find an event near you. http://www.safekids.org/events
3. Buy a used car seat only if you know its full crash history. That means you must buy it from someone you know, not from a thrift store or over the Internet. Once a car seat has been in a crash or is expired or broken, it needs to be replaced.
4. We know that when adults wear seat belts, kids wear seat belts. So be a good example and buckle up for every ride. Be sure everyone in the vehicle buckles up, too.
5. Never leave your child alone in a car, not even for a minute. While it may be tempting to dash out for a quick errand, the temperature inside your car can rise 20 degrees and cause heatstroke in the time it takes for you to run in and out of the store.
Car seat Checklist
Follow this easy-to-use checklist when buying a new child safety seat:
? The seat you have selected can be used rear-facing.
? The seat meets the federal motor vehicle safety standard. This information can be found on a sticker on the side of the car seat.
? Your child's height and weight fits the height and weight limits listed on a label on the side of the car seat.
? The harness is easy for you to adjust each and every time you put your baby in and out of the seat.
? The seat is easy to install in your car.
? If you have more than one car and are buying an infant carrier with a base, you can buy a base for each car.
If you are buying a used child safety seat, you also have to check the following:
? The history of the child safety seat; make sure it was never involved in a crash.
? The seat has not been recalled. Visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for recall information.
? The seat is not too old. Most manufacturers place an expiration date on their child safety seats, which is normally around six years.