WALNUT CREEK, Calif., Sept. 24, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- For Child Passenger Safety Week, AAA is reminding caregivers to get their car seats inspected or installed by nationally certified AAA Child Passenger Safety technicians. This service is open to anyone year-round, in Alaska, Arizona, Montana, Nevada, Northern California, Utah and Wyoming.
AAA is conducting inspections at available locations, and educating the public on five most common child safety seat installation mistakes through a series of educational videos. They urge the public to participate in this program given that three out of four child car seats are installed incorrectly.
"We are committed to ensuring caregivers are confident knowing that their children are safe and secure because their car seats have been properly installed," said Karen Bianchini, Senior Vice President of Communications and Community Impact, AAA Northern California and six other Western states. "When installed correctly, a car seat reduces the risk of fatal injury by 71 percent for infants and 54 percent for toddlers. That's why we are proud to be part of the solution to make inspections by certified technicians available to the public for free."
Proper car seat installation can reduce the risk of motor vehicle injury to children, and it is important for the public to understand five common mistakes:
- Don't move children out of booster seats too soon. Seat belts are designed to fit adults and improper usage can result in head, neck, or spine injuries. Caregivers should keep children in booster seats until a seat belt fits them properly.
- Ensure the car seats are secured properly. If the seat belt or lower anchor connection is too loose, car seats will not stay put, subjecting a child to greater crash forces. Children's car seats should not move side-to-side or front-to-back more than one inch when tested at the belt path.
- Properly tighten harness straps. If harnesses are too loose, children will not be properly restrained in the event of a crash. Harness straps should lay flat and not have any twists. Be sure the harness is snug enough that you cannot pinch any extra harness material at a child's shoulder.
- Place the retainer clip at armpit level. When a retainer clip is too low, a child can come out of the harnesses, or the hard, plastic clip can cause abdominal injuries. Always place the retainer clip at armpit level.
- Don't turn children forward-facing too soon. When a child rides rear-facing, the head, neck, and spine are all supported by the hard shell of the car seat. Children should remain in a rear-facing car seat as long as possible, until they reach the highest weight or height allowed by their seat.
For additional information and to schedule a free inspection at a local AAA branch, please visit aaa.com/carseats
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