With September 18-24 being National Child Passenger Safety Week, we should all be reminded that we can make a difference in the safety of child passengers on the roads of Pennsylvania. After all, car accidents are the number one cause of fatal injuries for children ages 1 to 13. Let’s take a moment for a quick recap to keep the awareness alive even after National Child Passenger Safety Week has come to a close.
Tips for Keeping Children Safe in Vehicles: Car Seats, Booster Seats, and Seat Belts
In the event of a car accident, it is vital to know safety procedures specific for children. To ensure that children are protected, even if they are never in an accident (which is the goal), anyone traveling with a child should follow car seat rules. Car seats are crucial in keeping child passengers safe, and they need to be installed and secured properly. When purchasing a car seat for your child, keep in mind the following factors:
- Rear-facing: Infants and smaller children should ALWAYS ride facing toward the rear of the car.
- Forward-facing: When your child is older and weighs a certain weight, you can transfer him or her to a forward-facing car seat.
- Booster seats: A booster seat is for a child who is even older than those who can ride in forward-facing car seats. While it may seem like they are ready to wear only a seat belt, keep in mind that a car seat, even when facing forward, protects your child by surrounding them in the event of an accident.
- Seat Belt: When your child becomes a teenager, they are typically grown enough to wear just a seat belt.
Be sure to know the laws about this and follow instructions on car seats that you purchase. Teach your children from a young age the importance of wearing a seat belt, so it becomes second nature for them when they become of age to wear a seat belt without a car seat or a booster seat.
Final Tips for Keeping Children Safe in Vehicles
Beyond ensuring that every child is in an appropriate car seat for their age and weight, we also need to make sure to ALWAYS double-check that they are properly strapped in. Children do try to get out of their car seats while the vehicles are moving, therefore, you should secure each strap as tight as possible to ensure they cannot wiggle out of their car seat while you are driving. Additionally, you should always have children who are under the age of 12 in the back seat of the car, where they are safer in the event of an accident.
Lastly, when you are driving with children in tow, be sure to follow traffic laws and pay attention to other vehicles around you. If your child has been injured in a car accident in Philadelphia, you should contact a Philadelphia car accident attorney to ensure your child’s medical bills are recovered. The attorneys at Solnick & Associates, LLC help parents whose children are suffering car accident injuries. Contact us today and we will work diligently for you and your child to obtain the compensation your child deserves.
(image courtesy of Shrekducksing)