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Common car seat mistakes parents should avoid
10/16/2011

Common car seat mistakes parents should avoid

(NAPS)-Parents of young children need to be better educated in order to avoid making potentially dangerous safety mistakes when they are on the go.
The Problem
Automobile crashes remain a leading cause of death for children and it's important that parents consistently and correctly use the appropriate car seat to keep their child passengers safe. Many parents may be unknowingly endangering their children as three out of four car seats are not used correctly, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Some Answers
Busy parents and caregivers may be tempted by safety shortcuts when transporting children. AAA offers simple reminders to protect parents' most precious cargo.
Shortcut: "I'm only driving a mile from home, so my son doesn't need to be secured in his car seat since it's a short trip."
Reminder: You should buckle up properly on every trip-no matter the distance-especially since most crashes occur close to home.
Shortcut: "I'm picking up several kids after soccer practice and I'm going to put my 8-year-old daughter in the front seat so all the children can fit into the car."
Reminder: All children under age 13 are safest when riding in the backseat and properly restrained in a car seat, booster seat or seat belt.
Shortcut: "We will be driving more people in our car than we have seat belts. Since it's a short trip, it's not a big deal for someone to ride on another person's lap."
Reminder: It's never safe to ride on another person's lap. Each passenger should be properly restrained on every trip.
Shortcut: "My son is 10 years old and 4'6" tall. He's big enough to use a seat belt now."
Reminder: The American Academy of Pediatrics now recommends children continue to use belt-positioning booster seats until they are 4'9" and the seat belt fits properly.
Help For Parents
Fortunately, AAA experts are available to help parents with car seat installation. Visit an AAA club, go to www.seatcheck.org or call (866) SEATCHECK [(866) 732-8243].
Learn More
For additional information on AAA's child passenger safety resources for parents and caregivers, visit www.AAA.com/car seat.

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