Drivers on the road, especially in New Jersey, face a lot of distractions. Common distractions for any driver on the road are aggressive drivers, weather conditions, and technology. It is important for yours and others safety to practice safe driving all the time.
Car crashes are a leading cause of death for children ages one to thirteen. The week of September 17-23 is Child Passenger Safety Week and we are here to inform you of tips to keep your kids and other kids safe.
- Which car seat should you use? As a parent, you should know that there are different car seats for a child’s age and size. Listed below are a variety of car seats for children
- Rear-facing car seats are designated for infants aged newborn to three years old. In the case of a crash, the car seat will cradle and move with your child to protect their fragile neck and spinal cord.
- Forward-facing car seats are designed for children aged one to seven. They feature a harness and tether to limit the child’s movement during a crash so their bodies do not move in a forward direction.
- A booster seat is for older children aged four to twelve and is one of the last car seats for a child to use before moving to the seat belt. The booster seat positions the seat belt to be over the strongest parts of the child’s body.
- The last stage for children is the seat belt which is typically used by kids eight to thirteen and beyond. When a child uses a seat belt, make sure that the belt lies across the upper thighs and across the shoulder and chest. The seat belt was purposely designed to sit in this position so during a crash, you and your child are restrained.
Proper installation of your child’s car seat is just as important as getting the right one. Schedule an appointment with a localchild passenger safety (CPS) technician to get your car seat verified or visit the NHTSA.
- How should I encourage my children to wear their seatbelts? Over the past five years, over 1,500 kids between the age of eight and fourteen have died in a car accident and almost half of them were not seat belted. It is hard to discipline a child while driving or to see what they are doing while you are driving. To ensure your child’s safety, follow these tips:
- Use regular reminders to consistently ensure seatbelts are being put on.
- Be the parent and set the example for your children by wearing a seatbelt.
- Set seat belts as a rule for using the car. When your child is not wearing their seatbelt, the car cannot move.
- One option a lot of parents are using is the scare factor. Be honest with your kids and tell them what can happen to them without a seat belt and how many children their age have died from not wearing one.
- How should a pregnant woman wear their seat belt? A lot of women will improperly wear a seatbelt or not wear a seatbelt at all because how it sits on their stomachs while pregnant. Pregnant or not pregnant, you should ALWAYS be wearing your seatbelt. To properly place your seatbelt on yourself while pregnant, follow these steps:
- Make sure your seatbelt is away from your neck but not off your shoulder and your seatbelt is across your chest.
- Remove any extra seatbelt; make sure the seatbelt is as tight as possible against you.
- The seatbelt on your lap should be secured below your stomach and fit snugly across your hips and pelvic bone.
- Make sure you are comfortable and in an upright position.
- Allow as much distance as possible between you and the steering wheel.
Be an advocate for vehicle safety and require your children and others to wear seat belts in the car; it is the law.