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St. John’s is urging parents and caregivers to make sure their child safety seats are properly installed in their vehicles during the fourth annual “National Seat Check Saturday,” on Saturday Sept. 25.
Certified child passenger safety technicians will be available to provide hands-on instruction on installing car seats and booster seats from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. at Kohl’s Department store located at 909 E. Independence, Springfield.
According to Pam Holt, Trauma Prevention Coordinator at St. John’s Hospital, “Seventy-five percent of motor vehicle crashes occur within 25 miles of home. In addition, 60 percent of crashes occur on roads with posted speed limits of 40 MPH or less”. Holt reports that many parents believe their child is riding safely, yet 9 out of 10 car seat in the Ozarks are not being used properly.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says that child safety seats reduce the risk of being killed in a car crash by 71 percent for an infant and by 54 percent for a toddler. This is why all 50 states have laws that require the use of child safety restraints.
The wide range of makes and models of car seats on the market today has left more than a few parents confused. A recent NHTSA study reveals nearly 3 out of 4 parents don’t know how to use child safety restraints properly. Child Passenger Safety Technicians in Missouri report an even higher misuse rate.
During National Seat Check Saturday technicians will provide on-site car seat checks and education at locations across Missouri. Seat Check Saturday is the culmination of a week-long child safety seat campaign. The annual campaign includes education on proper safety seat installation and use as well as increased law enforcement cracking down on Missouri’s child safety seat law violators. Violators could pay fines as much as $50 plus court costs.