Sharon Rengers from the office of Child Advocacy at Kosair Children’s Hospital will be handing out booster seats to the local community on June 20th in response to recent child fatalities and motor vehicle crashes being the leading cause of death for children in Kentucky and the US. Booster seats will be given out at New Life Baptist Church from 10 a.m.-12 noon and at Russellville Fire Department from 1:30-3:30 p.m.
Motor vehicle crashes continue to be the leading cause of death among children in Kentucky and the United States. Much of this is caused by the fact that only 10 percent of car seats are used correctly. It is important that parents across the country are reminded to keep children of all ages properly restrained in the seat that meets their weight and height requirements.
The Children’s Hospital Foundation Office of Child Advocacy of Kosair Children’s Hospital is working to help educate local families on the simple steps they can take to prevent childhood injury or death due to incorrect use of child safety seating.
On June 20, 2012, booster seats will be given away to the community at two locations to promote community awareness.
Not only are people misusing the car seats they have, but some parents are not restraining their child at all. Seat belts and even the seat of a car are made for adults, not children, according to Sharon Rengers, R.N., Children’s Hospital Foundation Office of Child Advocacy of Kosair Children’s Hospital. “Because the seat belt doesn’t fit correctly, many times you see children who put the shoulder portion of the seat belt behind their back or under their arm for comfort,” Rengers said. “This removes all upper body protection for the child. When children are too small for a seat belt alone, you also see them slouch down, causing the lap belt to be across their stomach rather than their hip bones. In the event of a crash, both situations could cause internal injuries or worse yet, the child could be ejected from the car.” According to Rengers, a booster seat can reduce injuries from incorrectly fitting lap-shoulder belts by adding the extra height a child needs to properly fit the restraints.
Rengers states that all children less than 4 feet 9 inches tall should ride in a booster seat to be correctly protected by a vehicle’s safety belt. She will be on hand passing out booster seats to the community on June 20, 2012.
Tips to know if your child needs a booster seat
A simple exercise can help determine if a child should be riding in a booster seat. Have the child sit in the back seat of a vehicle. While sitting with his or her back against the seat:
• The child’s knees should bend at the edge of the seat.
• The lap belt should lie across his or her hip bones.
• The shoulder belt should come across the middle of his or her shoulder. If the child is slouching or scooting forward in the seat to make his or her knees bend over the edge or if the lap and/or shoulder belt are not positioned correctly, a booster seat may help the child better fit in the vehicle seat that has been designed for an adult.
For more information using car safety and booster seats correctly, call (502) 629-KIDS or visit KosairChildrens.com, keywords “buckle up.”