Press Release - 09-25-2018
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 25, 2018
NEW YORK STATE DMV AND THE GOVERNOR’S TRAFFIC SAFETY COMMITTEE LAUNCH CHILD PASSENGER SAFETY VIDEO SERIES
Videos Highlight Proper Installation and Use of Child Safety Seats
Car Seat Inspections Offered Statewide Through September 29 for National Child Passenger Safety Week
The New York State Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee (GTSC) launched a four-part online video series to highlight safety measures to protect children and infants in motor vehicles. National data show car crashes are a leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 13.
The video series will be shared on the GTSC’s Facebook and Twitter pages. It is part of a national driver education effort during Child Passenger Safety Week, which runs from through September 29 this year. In addition, National Car Seat Check Saturday is September 29. A total of 35 car seat check events are planned statewide throughout the week, including 24 on Saturday, to help parents ensure their children’s restraints are safely installed. Complete details on those events and others sponsored by the GTSC throughout the year are available on the GTSC website.
“We are happy to offer child safety seat checks year-round, especially during national awareness weeks when we can bring widespread attention to this important topic,” said Terri Egan, DMV Executive Deputy Commissioner and Acting GTSC Chair. “No matter how short a ride you are taking, even for a quick trip to the grocery store, it is worth taking the time to make sure your little ones are protected. Our new videos will be a useful tool to inform parents and caregivers about safely securing children in an appropriate seat and the risks of not following recommended guidelines.”
The new video series emphasizes the dangers of placing infants and small children in forward-facing car seats, where their risk of injury is 75 percent higher than in rear-facing car seats. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) cautions that many parents prematurely move their children from a rear-facing car seat to a forward-facing seat. The agency recommends keeping children in rear-facing car seats for as long as possible, until he or she reaches the top height or weight limit allowed by the car seat's manufacturer.
The video series also encourages parents to have a certified technician check their child’s safety seat to be sure it is properly installed. NHTSA data shows that 59 percent of the restraints are not correctly installed.
Another video in the series focuses on how to properly fit shoulder and lap straps based on the child’s size. According to New York’s occupant restraint law, each passenger under age 16 must wear a seat belt or use an appropriate child safety restraint system. The restraint system must comply with the height and weight recommendations determined by the manufacturer. Depending on the size of the child, the restraint system may be a safety seat or a booster seat used in combination with a lap and shoulder belt. All children must be in an appropriate child restraint until their 8th birthday.
More information about choosing the correct child safety seat is available on the DMV’s website.
According to the NHTSA, in 2016, the lives of approximately 328 children under age 5 were saved nationally by car seats. Child safety seats have been shown to reduce fatal injury by 71 percent for infants (under 1-year-old) and by 54 percent for toddlers (1-to 4-years old) in passenger cars, the NHTSA says. Of the children killed in car crashes in 2016, 65 percent were unrestrained.