Child Passenger Safety Week Fact Sheet
Correctly using the right seat for your child’s age and size greatly reduces the chances of death or serious injury in a crash.
September 23-29 is Child Passenger Safety Week in Washington and nationwide, providing focus on ensuring parents and caregivers are using the right car seats (rear or forward-facing, or booster seats).
Your child’s safety in the car requires the right seat, used the right way, every time. The type of seat varies depending on your child’s age and size. Know the right seat to keep your child safe.
Many communities throughout Washington are providing Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians (CPST) to help consumers install and use the right seat for their child’s age and size. Check https://www.nhtsa.gov/equipment/car-seats-and-booster-seats#install-instructions to find a location near you.
Child Car Safety by the Numbers
Car crashes are a leading killer of children ages one to 13.
Every 33 seconds in 2016, one child under the age of 13 was involved in a crash.
In Washington, 67 child vehicle occupants 12 and younger died in traffic crashes from 2010 to 2017.
Fourteen of those children were unrestrained, 21 were restrained with only the seat belt system (instead of a booster seat which may have provided life-saving protection) and 10 were riding in an illegal position in the front seat or cargo area.
The rate of serious motor vehicle crash injury and death for American Indians and Alaskan Native children in Washington is three times that of other racial groups.
The Right Seats Used the Right Way Save Children’s Lives
In 2016, among children under five, car seats saved an estimated 328 lives nationally. A total of 370 children could have survived if they had been buckled up 100% of the time.
In passenger cars, car seats reduce the risk of fatal injury by 71% for infants and by 54% for toddlers.
For infants and toddlers in light trucks, the reduction in fatal injuries by using a car seat was at least 58%.
Most parents are confident that they have correctly installed their child’s car seat. But in most cases – 59% -- the seat has not been installed correctly.
According to NHTSA data, in 2015, about 25.8% of children four-to-seven were prematurely moved to seat belts when they should have been riding in booster seats.
Don’t Take a Chance - Double-Check Your Child’s Safety During Child Passenger Safety Week
During Child Passenger Safety Week (September 23-29) many Washington communities will have Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians available to educate caregivers about choosing the right seat and installing it correctly.
Go to https://www.nhtsa.gov/equipment/car-seats-and-booster-seats#install-instructions for information about the right seat for your child and to find a car seat inspection station near you.