It’s important to use a seatbelt and wear it right

Sunday, September 13, 2020
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The single most important thing you can do to protect yourself and your family members is to make sure everyone in your car is buckled up every single time the car is moving.

Did you know there’s no magic number?

Kids need a booster seat until the seatbelt fits properly without it.

With laws varying from state to state and with some states having higher standards than others, we encourage all families to adopt the following safety guidelines for protecting their children.

For the best protection of your child, keep kids in a rear-facing car seat until they are at least age two and have outgrown the height or weight limit on the label of the car seat they are using. (Each car seat has its own limits and guidelines.

Be sure you know where to find those limits on the seats you are using for your children. Limits can also be found in the user manual for each seat.)

It is important that you know that history of a car seat if purchasing from someone else. If stickers are missing from the seat, it is safest to take the seat to the health department and have the seat destroyed.

Keeping your child in the rear facing position as long as possible is extremely important because kids who ride rear-facing have the best protection for their head, neck and spine.

Children who have outgrown their rear-facing seat move to a forwardfacing seat with a harness. Keep them in the forward–facing car seat until they reach the weight or height limits on the label of the car seat.

After a child gets too big for the weight or height limits listed on the forward-facing car seat’s label, move to a booster seat used with the vehicle lap and shoulder seat belt.

A child is ready for using the seat belt alone when they can pass the three tests.

1) The child’s knees should bend at the edge of the seat when their back and bottoms are against the vehicle seat back.

2) The vehicle lap belt fits snugly across the bony hips or upper thighs (NOT THE SOFT STOMACH).

3) The shoulder belt fits across the bony shoulder and chest (NOT ACROSS THE FACE OR NECK.

All children under 13 years of age are safest in the back seat.

If you have questions about your child or a car seat they may be using, call the Dawson County Health Department and schedule a time to meet with the Car Seat Technician.

You can have your car seat checked to ensure you have your child in the safest seat for them.