One of the most overlooked things parents face these days is that their children are not being buckled in correctly.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), two out of three child safety seats are not used correctly.
September is Texas Department of Transportation’s Save Me with a Seat campaign where parents are encouraged to sign up for a free safety seat check-up at any of their 25 district offices in the state. These free safety seat inspections take about 20-30 minutes and are available weekdays throughout the year as well.
The most common mistake is not being buckled-in correctly, which is usually associated with the size of the safety seat being used. More often than not, it is the wrong size. Just like children grow out of their clothes, the same thing applies to car seats.
The Law requires all children under 8 years old, unless they are taller than 4 feet, 9 inches, to be in a safety seat whenever they ride in a vehicle. Fines for failing to do so can be up to $250.
TxDOT warns to not buy a secondhand car seat as you do not know what condition they are in or if they have been recalled. It is highly recommended that car seats all be registered to make sure parents are notified about recalls and guided through the repair process. Usually, the car seat comes with the registration information that can then be done online with your vehicle manufacturer to give you peace of mind.
Children rely and depend on their parents for safety as they have no sense of what needs to be done or what the law says needs to be done. It is necessary for parents to make sure of what needs to be done and abide by the law to ensure their children are safe.
Many times accidents render the car seats unsafe and it is the responsibility of the adult to replace car seats to ensure they will hold up in the event of a future accident.
These minor things that are taken for granted many times when in a rush or going about the day can save lives and make sure that our children are as safe as necessary. Just a few extra minutes getting the car seats checked out or registered could make all the difference.