(WKBN) – September is Child Passenger Safety Month, and it’s important for all parents and family members to know how to properly use a car seat to keep the child safe.
Car seat safety is something to be aware of all year round.
Injury Prevention Coordinator Bill McMahon with Akron Children’s Hospital Mahoning Valley says the national misuse average of car seats is 80% in the U.S.
“It’s something that all parents, grandparents, caregivers, aunts and uncles deal with, so it is an ongoing, you know, we never run out of people to help. Let’s put it that way,” McMahon said.
He says to be patient with the process of installing a car seat, read the instruction manual, and make sure the seat and the child are in the car properly.
McMahon also says if the car seat isn’t installed correctly or if the child isn’t in it correctly, the risk of dying in a car accident grows dramatically.
The car seats protect the child from a bunch of different scenarios.
“They protect head and neck injuries. They protect the child from being ejected from the vehicle and of course the vehicle rolling over on top of them or running them over once they are ejected. They protect them from all kinds of leg issues, being thrown throughout the vehicle, head injuries,” McMahon said.
Alexis Betts is a third time mom.
She says car seats can be tricky, but they are life saving. She says her sister-in-law was in a head-on collision, and the doctors told her that, because the kids were buckled in their car seats correctly, it saved their lives.
She says learning and using a car seat shouldn’t be an option.
“It’s definitely important that me and that everyone in the family is on the same page with how to get them in and how to get them out. It’s really just nonnegotiable,” Betts said.
If you have any questions, need a car seat or to learn how to install one, call Akron Children’s Hospital at 330-729-9254.