SULPHUR, LA (KPLC) - According to the United States Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, during the past 30 years, nearly 9,000 lives have been saved by the use of child restraints. Today, Saturday September 24, 2011, various agencies came together to buckle in our area's children and teach adults how to secure both booster seats and car seats.
All who assisted motorists were Nationally Certified Technicians who had taken a 32 hour class to be qualified to install child seats.
Alisa Stevens, Child Safety Coordinator for the Office Public Health for SWLA Area Health Education Center says the biggest misuse she saw today were people who installed child seats forward facing when the child was either not old or large enough. She also says the other common misuse was letting a child use a seatbelt and not a booster seat.
Stevens says even though the law says a child must be at least 1 years old to install a car seat forward facing, the American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that children's car seats not be turned forward facing until 2 years of age because their bones, muscles and tendons are not fully developed yet.
As far as using a booster seat, Stevens says a booster seat must be used once a child outgrows their car seat. Booster seats are used for children 8 years old; up to 80lbs; and/or up to 4 foot 9 inches tall. The reason being a booster seat will help secure the seatbelt to the child properly. The belt should be able to go around their hips and shoulder not their stomach. Without a booster seat, the upper body of the child is not protected and the chance of internal injuries is much greater and almost certain in the case of an accident.
For more information: