Car seat care stressed during Child Passenger Safety Week

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- During Child Passenger Safety Week the National Highway Safety Administration is asking parents to make sure children are properly buckled in.

According to the CDC one of the most dangerous places for a child is in the car with the organization reporting motor vehicle crashes as the leading cause of death for children.

Director Lieske Giese with the Eau Claire City-County Health Department says proper installation of car seats is one way to help stop crashes from becoming deadly.

“Many of us put our kids in cars every day and we can prevent something tragic happening by doing it right,” said Giese.

Recently released data from 2015 shows an increase in the number of children dying in car crashes.

"There was a 10% increase in fatalities for children under the age of 13,” said Kate Carr with SafeKids.org.

The Eau Claire Police Department says the safest place in a car for a child is the backseat center position.

“Research has shown that children under the age of two have a 75% more chance of death or serious injury if they're forward facing than if they were rear facing,’ explained safety officer Terry Nicks.

Nicks says another safety precaution parents should take is to watch out for projectiles. He says something as simple as an umbrella or a tissue box can do major damage.

“In a crash anything lying lose can become a projectile, even a small square tissue box lying in the back window at 45 miles an hour of a frontal impact can have the impact of a brick by the time it hits the front windshield,” added Nicks.

Especially in the winter Nicks says secure ice scrapers in the trunk or seat pouches and make sure to still keep children in only one layer of clothing in the car seat.

Nicks explained, “The reason is the more bulk you put between the child and the car seat and the child and the harness, in a crash the child could slip out of the harness and become ejected.”

Nicks recommends all parents have their car seat checked or installed by a certified technician.

“It's serious injury prevention and to minimize the extent of injury when there's a crash involved,” said Nicks.

Nicks says instead of a having children in a bulky, potentially harmful coat in the car seat to use blankets piled on top and put a coat on once they're out of the seat.

Nicks says parents wanting to get their seats checked can contact the Eau Claire police or fire department.



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