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Are you using your child’s safety seat correctly?

On Behalf of | Nov 14, 2019 | Car Accidents

Most parents will say that their child’s safety is their highest priority. Parents attest that of no more significant concern for their children is that of their safety. The state of New Jersey is inclined to the same notion. Therefore, the Garden State has one of the strictest child safety seat laws in the nation.

Car accidents are the leading cause of death for U.S. children ages 1 to 13. Approximately 40% of these children are unrestrained or improperly restrained. Most parents and caregivers naturally believe they are using car safety seats correctly. However, approximately 59% of car seats are incorrectly installed or misused. Choosing the right safety seat and using it correctly can help protect your child’s safety in the event of an accident.

Common mistakes to avoid

Car seats might seem straightforward and easy to install, but they are easier to get wrong than you might think. According to the American Association of Pediatrics, some common mistakes include:

The car seat is too loose. A car seat that moves one inch in any direction is too loose and dangerous.t. In a collision, a child can be thrown forward, putting a severe strain on their neck or hit the front seat and suffer a head injury.

Your child is facing forward too soon. According to the New Jersey Child Passenger Restraint Law (Title 39:3-76.2a), all children under two years old must be secured in a rear-facing car seat. Car seats for infants and small children are engineered to help prevent injury to the baby’s head, neck and spine.

The recline of the car seat is incorrect. All rear-facing car seats have built-in angle indicators that will tell you whether it is installed at the right angle. Rear-facing car seats must be installed at the correct angle to keep an infant’s head well-positioned.

Before you hit the road with your kiddo in tow, take time to read your vehicle’s owner’s manual and child safety seat instructions. If you have further questions or concerns, consider scheduling an appointment with a certified child passenger seat inspector.