Car safety has always been a concern for parents with infants or small children. According to the Center for Disease Control, injuries suffered in auto accidents are the greatest public health problem for children and the leading cause of death in children. In 2002, 1,543 children ages 14 and under were killed in motor vehicle crashes in the U.S.; 227,000 were injured (NHTSA 2003). However, these concerns can easily be alleviated with the use of the proper child restraints.
There are many choices for child restraints, contingent upon the age and size of the child. From birth to age 8, children should be secured in the appropriate child restraint, preferably in the back seat, while riding in an automobile. After age 8, children should stay in a child restraint until an adult seat belt fits properly. While seat belts and air bags save many adult lives each year, the same is true for children in the proper child restraints.
• An infant car bed is the appropriate child restraint for premature babies or those with low birth weight.
• A rear-facing infant restraint is the appropriate child restraint for the first 12 months (normally from birth to 20 pounds).
• A forward-facing child restraint is the appropriate child restraint for children 1 to 4 years of age (20-40 pounds).
• A booster seat is the appropriate child restraint for children ages 4-8 (40-80 pounds).
Download the Car Safety Seats guide for more information.
Keeping your child safe in your home is extremely important. View Home Safety Guidelines to help you make sure your home is safe for children.
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Riding bikes is a lot of fun, but accidents can happen. Wearing a helmet can help prevent many injuries. View Bicycle Helmet Safety to find out more.
Make a habit of protecting your child's skin. View Sun Safety to find out how.
View Swim Safety to find out more about keeping your child safe around water.