A free child car seat check-upwill be held Tuesday, May 20, sponsored by Palo Alto County Community Health. The event will be held at the Little Learners Daycare in Emmetsburg from 4 to 6 p.m.
Certified child safety seat technicians will be on hand to check car seats for correct installation and usage and provide education to parents and caregivers. This safety check is open to all members of the community and is not limited just to those who use the daycare.
"Most parents believe they buckle their kids in correctly, but surprisingly, most times they're wrong," said Roberta Anderson, RN, Certified child safety seat technician at Palo Alto County Hospital. "With so many types of child safety seats and seat belt systems, it's hard to be sure child safety seats are in correctly.
One common mistake is parents often believe that once their children outgrow their forward-facing safety seats, an adult belt is good enough. A child, who cannot sit with his or her back straight against the vehicle seat back cushion, with knees bent over a vehicle's seat edge without slouching, must use a booster seat.
Adult seat belts can be dangerous when used alone if the child is too small. The shoulder belt cuts across their necks and the lap belt rides up into their bellies. In a crash, this can cause serious or even fatal injuries. For this reason, booster seats are critical. Child safety seats-including boosters-are very effective in protecting children in crashes.
Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of unintentional injury-related death among children ages 14 and under. Car seats and safety belts, when used correctly, reduce death by as much as 71 percent.
For more information on this safety check event, please call Palo Alto County Community Health (712) 852-5419.