Folks, Child Passenger Safety Week begins this Saturday, and there really is only one message: Parents and caregivers, buckle up your children the right way on every ride.
This morning we kicked-off National Child Passenger Safety Week at the DC Fire and Emergency Medical Services Fireboat-house, hosted by Deputy Chief Kenneth Crosswhite. We went there because on Saturday, September 12, Chief Crosswhite and his department will hold one of thousands of Child Safety Seat Inspections taking place across America.
Why do we need Child Safety Seat Inspection stations? Because, of all the cargo transported in this country, there is none more precious than your children. And because three out of every four of those precious children are not properly fastened into safety seats. That's despite the best intentions of parents and caregivers.
The straps are not fastened tightly enough. The seat is not firmly attached to the vehicle. A young child is seated facing forward when he or she is still too young. Or worse, a child is not seated in a safety seat at all.
As a grandfather, I have some experience with this, and I know it takes patience. But, as Safe Kids reports, vehicle crashes are the leading killer of children ages 2 to 14, and these tragic losses are preventable. The safety technology is there; we just don't use it well enough.
So please, parents and caregivers, if you have any doubts at all about whether your infant, toddler, or child is in the right car seat-–or whether you’re buckling them up the right way-–don’t hesitate to get some help.
You can use our National Highway Traffic Safety Administration web service to locate an Inspection site near you this week. The technicians on-site know what they're doing, and in only a few minutes they'll help you get it right.
Can you really have anything more important to do this week?