Is your child’s car seat going to be effective in a crash?

State News

Child safety seat in the back of the car. (Getty Images)

BISMARCK, N.D. – During National Child Passenger Safety Week, September 19-25, 2021, the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) encourages parents and caregivers to take time to ensure their car seats and booster seats fit their children appropriately and are correctly installed in the vehicle.

According to information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) nearly half of all car seats are installed incorrectly.

Car seats and boosters are one of the easiest ways to keep children safe while traveling in a vehicle. NHTSA states that “when installed correctly, car seats can reduce the risk of fatal injury in a crash by 71% for infants and by 54% for toddlers. Unfortunately, many parents misuse their car seats, and are unaware of it.”  

To correctly use a car seat for your child:

  • Read and carefully follow the instructions included with the car/booster seat and the vehicle owner’s manual. You can also visit the car seat manufacturer’s website to watch an installation video online.
  • Attend a local car seat checkup in your area to receive assistance from a certified child passenger safety technician.
    • For North Dakota car seat checkup schedules visit the new, online resource maps https://www.health.nd.gov/north-dakota-child-passenger-safety-assistance .
    • To find a Certified Child Passenger Safety Technician (CPST) in your area, visit https://cert.safekids.org and select “find a tech”
    • Make an appointment at the virtual car seat checkup event on Sept. 25, 2021, and meet one-on-one with a CPST via Zoom to learn how to correctly use and install your car seat(s) from the safety and convenience of your home. Register online at: ly/3jlPLWG

Child Passenger Safety Week is designed to increase awareness of the importance of properly restraining children in motor vehicles. Parents and caregivers can set a good example by buckling up themselves. According to the NHTSA, restraint use for children driven by belted drivers is significantly higher than for those driven by unbelted drivers.

For more information, visit: https://www.health.nd.gov/north-dakota-child-passenger-safety or contact Dawn Mayer, Child Passenger Safety Program Director, at 701-328-4536.

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