Riggs Ambulance Service said it's urging parents and care givers to make sure their child’s safety seats have been properly installed during the 2010 Child Passenger Safety Week (Sept. 19-25).
It is the responsibility of every person who travels with a child in a vehicle to make sure their children are safely restrained. Riggs Ambulance Service is advising parents to get their child’s seats inspected by a certified technician, the company said in a news release.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 8,959 lives have been saved from 1975 to 2008 by the proper use of child restraints. In 2008, 244 lives were saved by child restraints on passengers under the age of 5. Research shows child restraints provide the best protection for all children up to the age of 8.
For maximum child passenger safety, the NHTSA has 4 Steps for Kids guidelines that determine which restraint system is best suited to protect children based on age and size:1. For the best possible protection keep infants in the back seat, in rear-facing child safety seats, as long as possible up to the height or weight limit of the particular seat. At a minimum, keep infants rear-facing until a minimum of age 1 and at least 20 pounds.2. When children outgrow their rear-facing seats, they should ride in forward-facing child safety seats, the back seat, until they reach the upper weight or height limit of the particular seat; usually around age 4 or 40 pounds.3. Once children outgrow their forward-facing seats, they should ride in booster seats, in the back seat, until the vehicle seat belts fit properly. Seat belts fit properly when the lap belt lays across the upper thighs and the shoulder belt fits across the chest; usually at age of 8 or when they are 4’9” tall.4. When children outgrow their booster seats, they can use the adult seat belt in the back seat if it fits properly.Riggs ambulance would like to remind parents that all children under the age of 13 should ride in the back seat of a vehicle. For more information on Child Passenger Safety Week, find a child seat technician, or child seat inspection station nearest you, visit: www.nhtsa.gov/Safety/CPS www.facebook.com/childpassengersafety www.safekids.org