As a parent, you know it’s important to use a car seat for children. But did you know that many people unintentionally use car seats incorrectly? With car accidents among the most common causes of death for children, it is critical that you understand how car seats can protect your child.
Car seat use and child safety has changed over the last several years. What you knew just a few years ago about keeping kids safe in cars may be different today.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), proper car seat use reduces the risk for infant death by 71 percent and for toddlers by 54 percent. Using a booster seat, instead of just a seat belt, for children ages 4 to 8 reduces the risk of severe injuries by 45 percent.
Because correct use of car seats and booster seats can be confusing, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) compiled four simple steps to help parents find the right car seat and install it properly. These tips can make selecting and using your car seat easier and safer.
It is also important to make sure older children wear seat belts every time they are in the car. And the CDC and NHTSA recommend that children sit in the back seat of the vehicle until at least age 12.
Of course, driving safely is also a key factor in reducing the risk of injury to children and all passengers. Driving while distracted, drowsy or under the influence can increase your risk of having an accident.
You cannot control the behavior of other drivers on the road, however. If you or your children suffer injuries in a car accident, speaking with a lawyer is a good idea. An experienced personal injury attorney can determine whether you are entitled to compensation.