Children and staff from the Day Nursery State Government Center helped the Governor’s Council on Impaired & Dangerous Driving kickoff Child Passenger Safety Week in Indiana. Since 7:00 am this morning, representatives from the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute, the Automotive Safety Program, the Marion County Traffic Safety Partnership, Indiana SafeKids and the Indiana State Police have been on hand on at the Robert D. Orr Plaza between the Indiana State Government Center’s North and South office buildings providing parents and caregivers with valuable information about the life saving benefits of proper child care restraint use. According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, child safety seats reduce the risk of fatal injury by 71 percent for infants and 54 percent for toddlers.
My youngest is in 4th grade so I haven’t used a car seat for a few years. I asked Amanda Estridge, child passenger safety technician what are the biggest mistakes parents make concerning car seat safety. The first thing she mentioned was that many people do not tighten the car seats belts tightly enough. They should be tight enough that you can’t pinch the strap. Many parents also position the clip too low. It should be up high on the child’s chest. New research is finding evidence that it is best for a child to be in a rear facing seat until they are two years old. Recent research suggests that toddlers through 23 months who ride rear facing in a car safety seat are more than five times safer than those in the same age group who ride in forward-facing seats. It is also strongly suggested you keep your child in their car seat until they approach the maximum weight limit for that seat.
Child safety seat vouchers may be available for qualified families. For more information, visit preventinjury.org or call 1-800-KID-N-CAR. For more child traffic safety facts, visit the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute. The Riley Hospital for Children is also a great resource for information.