Our Rock Hill accident attorneys know that car accidents are a leading cause of death for children. While teen drivers often put themselves in bad situations when they get behind the wheel, younger children are at risk of dying or being seriously injured in a car accident when traveling with parents or other adults in the car.
While kids are supposed to be in car seats and booster seats to ensure they are safe, the CDC indicates that as many as 72 percent of car seats may be misused in a manner that makes kids more likely to get hurt. Some parents aren't even aware of the requirement for car seat use nor of other important safety rules intended to avoid injuring children in auto accidents.
To help parents become better informed about how to keep their children safe in cars, Safer Car.gov provides many resources including informative tips on child safety seat use. The information is available in the Parent's Guide to Playing it Safe with Kids and Cars.
Parent Safety Tips for Children in Cars
Safer Car provides four basic pieces of advice that every single parent should be sure to follow. This advice includes:
- Always using a car seat for every trip even for short ones when you are just going down the street. Most car accidents happen not on long trips but instead when you are close to home. An unrestrained child could be seriously hurt in an accident that occurs anywhere, including when you are running routine errands very close to where you live. In general, kids should be in car or booster seats until around age eight but this will vary depending upon the requirements of your state as well as the height and weight of your child.
- Ensuring the car seat is compatible with the car that you drive. The manufacturer of the car seat should be able to provide this information to you and the information is often found in the instructions for the carseat.
- Ensuring that children sit in the back until they are age 12 or older. A front air bag is designed for an adult-sized person, not for a child. If an accident were to happen with a child in the front seat, then the child could be seriously hurt by the airbag, which inflates at a rate of around 200 miles-per-hour.
Safer Car also provides links to additional resources that parents can use to learn more and to provide even better protection for their kids. For example, there is a link that offers guidance in what to look for when buying a vehicle. Information on child car seat installation (including a video) is also available. This information can be invaluable in arming parents with the tools they need to ensure that the car is a safe place for their young passengers.