Incorrectly Used Child Safety Seats Lead to Infant Fatalities in Auto Accidents

On Behalf of | Oct 3, 2016 | Car Wrecks

Multiple recent car accidents in Texas have led to children being injured. In some of these accidents, investigators found some of the children in the vehicles were not properly secured in child safety seats, despite being young or small enough to need such a seat. A crash on the Loop 410 led to the deaths of a two small boys. Two other infants were severely injured in the accident. None of the children were in safety seats or wearing seat belts. The tragedy of these accidents is deepened when it is acknowledged that the proper use of child safety seats greatly reduces the likelihood of a child dying during an accident, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Despite the fact that car seat reduces the risk of an infant’s death by 71 percent or a toddler’s death by 54 percent, people still fail to use this safety equipment or secure their children into the seats properly.

Buying the Correct Safety Seat

Not every child safety seat is right for your child. Children grow and as they do, their seat must evolve with them. Newborns will need an infant car seat, which should only be rear-facing. The child will become too heavy or too tall for this seat. They will need the next size up, which can be forward facing and usually holds children up to 65 lbs. Many seats are convertible seats, which means they can shift and change shape to support your child through multiple stages. The last stage before children grow out of the need for a safety seat is a booster seat, which often holds children up to 80 lbs. It is important to note that you change the child’s safety seat based on their size and proper fit into the seat – not based on the child’s age.

Installing a Safety Seat Properly

After purchasing the correct child safety seat, parents need to make sure it is positioned in the car properly. Parents should read the manufacturer’s instructions on installing the seat. Most cars and seats use the LATCH system, which means there is a system of metal anchors and belts to secure the seat within the car. The seat should not move, slide, or jiggle while the car is in motion.

Using the Safety Seat Correctly

The main reason children are not protected as well as they should be in car safety seats is because they are not properly secured into the seat. Your child’s bottom should be flat against the car seat – he or she should not be slouching or sliding out of the bottom. The clip in front of your child should be snug and even with his or her armpits – not loose and on his or her belly. Make sure none of the straps are twisted or frayed.

Call the Bettersworth Law Firm for Help

If your child was injured or killed in a car accident because someone did not properly protect him or her with a car safety seat or failed to buckle your child in, call the passionate New Braunfels personal injury attorneys at the Bettersworth Law Firm. You may be able to recover damages from the person responsible for your child’s and your injuries. Call us or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. After getting to know you and your situation, we will advise you on your legal options.