Every day in America, millions of parents and caregivers travel to work, school, and after-school activities with their children. While many of those children are riding in correctly installed car seats for their ages and sizes, most are not. On average, two children under 13 were killed and an estimated 376 were injured every day in 2017 while riding in cars, SUVs, pickups, and vans. While these numbers are significantly lower than they were in 2016 – an eight percent decrease in fatalities, and a 19 percent decrease in the estimated injuries – there is still more work to be done to keep all children safe on America’s roadways.
Today, all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and all U.S. territories require the use of car seats for children traveling in motor vehicles. In 2017, of the 675 children 12 and younger who were killed riding in passenger vehicles, over 1 in 3 were not in a car seat, booster seat, or wearing a seat belt. While fatalities and injuries decreased in 2017 from 2016, it is imperative that we work together toward eliminating these preventable deaths and injuries.
That is why the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office is committed to educating parents and caregivers about the best ways to keep kids safe while traveling in cars, no matter how short or long the trip. We know that the list of things that parents do out of love for their children is long. Adding car seat safety to that list is essential to a child’s well-being. During Child Passenger Safety Week, car seat safety checks will be held across the country. I encourage all parents and caregivers to take advantage of this free service to make sure their children are in the right car seats for their ages and sizes, and that the seats are installed correctly. To locate an inspection station in your area, and to get more information about child passenger safety, visit www.nhtsa.gov/carseat.
Now, therefore, I, Sheriff Doug Schuster, do hereby proclaim September 15-21, 2019, as “Child Passenger Safety Week,” and September 21 as “National Seat Check Saturday” in Mohave County. I urge everyone to help reduce injuries and the tragic loss of life by buckling up their children and themselves correctly—every trip, every time.
Doug Schuster SHERIFF
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