Can We Learn From the Tragedy of Others? -- Child Car Seats

Do not use this style of seat for a child under 40 pounds

In the news recently was the tragedy that affected a local family.  A child was riding in her father’s vehicle at the intersection of Eastern Ave and Pebble Rd.  Her father was critically injured in the accident.  We are not yet certain of all the details of this particular accident, but we do know the child was in a booster seat and not in a car seat with a built in harness.

One of the unfortunate problems in accidents like this, is there are people who are using safety equipment they falsely believe will help them in the time of greatest need.  The consequences of using the wrong equipment can be life or death.   Authorities acknowledge in this particular case, it may not have changed the outcome, but for many families it would, so knowledge is the key.

In the midst of tragedy, what can we do? 

Obviously, keeping this family in your thoughts and prayers is a good place to start.  However, if you have children, it may be an opportunity to evaluate your own car seat situation and see if improvements can be made for the safety of your child.

Experts on car seat safety say a child who is under 40 pounds should never be placed in a booster seat as the safest option.  For small children, a better option is using a car seat with built in harnesses.  Most consumers are not taught the difference between what is legal and what is safe; so they make an invalid assumption that if a seat is legal it must be a safe option for a child.  There is little room for error when it comes to a collision, so having the best safety option is paramount to secure your child’s well being.

If you need an in-depth set of guidelines to help keep your family safe in an accident, the American Society of Pediatrics has web page giving their recommendations.

As always, if you have been in an accident or injured, please call the office of Ed Bernstein to discuss the details of your case. 

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