SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) – Child Passenger Safety Week is just around the corner (Sept. 20-26) and AAA Utah is offering free, online car seat inspections in an effort to keep Utah kids safe while shedding some light on some common car seat mistakes.
“By shifting our seat checks to an online format, we’ve continued to deliver on our commitment to Utahns most precious cargo,” said Aldo Vazquez, spokesperson, AAA Utah. “We want parents and caregivers to take advantage of this free expertise because we know that it can help keep kids safe.”
To date, AAA’s nationally certified technicians have performed several hundred online seat checks. This ensures that the car seat is placed correctly and that parents and caregivers can make the needed adjustments to the car seat.
According to AAA, research shows that three out of four car seats are installed incorrectly. As Child Passenger Safety week soon begins, AAA Utah is sharing six common mistakes when it comes to the installation of car seats.
- Car seats aren’t secured tightly enough. Children’s car seats should not move side-to-side or front-to-back more than one inch when tested at the belt path
- Harness straps are too loose. AAA Utah says that harness straps should lay flat and be snug enough that extra harness material can’t be pinched at the child’s shoulders.
- Shoulder straps are not positioned properly. In rear-facing seats, shoulder straps should lie flat and be placed through the slot that is at or just below a child’s shoulders. In forward-facing seats, shoulder straps should lie flat and be placed through the slot that is just above a child’s shoulders.
- Retainer clip (or chest clip) is too low. Always place the retainer clip at armpit level. If the clip is too low, a child can come out of the harness or the clip can even cause injuries.
- Turning children forward-facing too soon. Infants and toddlers should ride in a rear-facing child safety seat as long as possible.
- Moving children out of booster seats too soon. Keep children in a belt-positioning booster seat until a vehicle’s adult seat belt fits properly.
To learn more about Child Passenger Safety Week, get resources, and schedule a free online inspection head to aaa.com/carseats.