As we prepare to hit the road for summer travel, I wanted to share a few safety tips from Safety 1st. Car Safety is priority for everyone and Safety 1st is constantly making certain that their travel seats not only meet the government standards but mommy standards. This is probably one of the busier travel weekends of the year and according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 75% of car seats on the road are installed incorrectly. Here are some easy tips to think about before hitting the road.
The safest place to install a car seat is typically in the center of the rear seat.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) advises parents to keep their toddlers in rear-facing car seats until age 2. It also advises that most children will need to ride in a belt-positioning booster seat until they have reached 4 feet 9 inches tall and are between 8 and 12 years of age.
Check in with a local Child Passenger Safety Technician to ensure your child’s seat is installed correctly. You can visit a local police station, fire station, AAA office or Safe Kids Chapter for guidance.
It may seem like common sense but never, leave a child alone in the car. Hyperthermia is a severe form of heat stroke and last year 30 children died after being left or trapped in a hot vehicle. You can learn more about this issue and easy tips to prevent it here.
Safeguard the Car
Just as important as safe guarding your home, don’t forget about the car. Especially on long road trips. It’s important to eliminate projectiles, anything in the car that is not secured is a possible projectile. That could be a child’s toy, wet nap container, or a water bottle. In a crash, objects take on greater weight due to crash forces.
Make sure unused shoulder belts are not in reach of children as they can pose strangulation risk.
Car Seats Expire
Car seats expire. Especially if you get a hand-me-down car seat you should always check the expiration date to confirm the seat is safe for your child. You can find the expiration date on the back or the side of the car seat. Also, another very important tip – once a car seat has been in a crash you should not use it, plastic can warp and materials can fray. To properly dispose of a car seat check with your local waste management facility to see if they recycle number 5 plastic.