Free child car seat inspections will be offered to raise awareness of Child Passenger Safety Week, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced today.
Child Safety Week, which takes place Sept. 15 – 21, is a national safety initiative that works with state and local police agencies and community safety partners.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, car crashes are the leading cause of death for children ages one to 13 in the U.S., reports Gannett’s Ashley Hupfl.
“Properly installed car seats can greatly reduce the risk of death or injury during an accident, so I encourage New Yorkers to use this opportunity to make sure young children are properly buckled into their car before hitting the road. When it comes to the safety of a child, there is no room for mistakes,” Cuomo said in a statement.
The NHTSA cautions parents not to make the five most common mistakes when installing a car seat. Parents should be careful not to use the wrong harness slot, or position the harness chest clip over the abdomen of the child. A harness should not move more than one inch, there should be no slack. The lap belt should not rest over the stomach and the shoulder belt should not be over the child’s neck or face.
“Learning how to properly install and use child safety equipment only takes a few minutes, but could prevent a lifetime of loss,” said DMV Commissioner and Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee Chair Barbara Fiala in a statement.
A survey by the NHTSA found that 20 percent of caregivers who installed car seats did not read the manufacturer’s instructions.
The NHTSA recommends:
• Select a car seat based on your child’s age and size, and choose a seat that fits in your vehicle and use it every time.
• Always refer to your specific car seat manufacturer’s instructions
• To maximize safety, keep your child in the car seat for as long as the child fits within the manufacturer’s height and weight requirements.
• Keep your child in the back seat at least through age 12.
For more information on where to get a car-seat inspection, visit http://www.safeny.ny.gov/seat-cal.htm
For ratings on all car seats, visit http://www.nhtsa.gov/Safety/Ease-of-Use