Most parents fail to follow child car seat guidelines

In a Time “Healthland” blog post, Katy Steinmetz writes, “Car crashes are the leading cause of death in kids over age 3 in the US, and yet many parents still don’t use car seats properly or don’t know what the guidelines are for car safety restraints, finds a recent study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.”

Dr. Michelle Macy Mott of Children’s Hospital at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and colleagues “reviewed three years of data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s 2007-09 National Survey on the Use of Booster Seats.” They found that “few parents were restraining their children properly in the car,” and that “in nearly every age group, minority children were significantly less likely to use appropriate car safety restraints than white children.”

CBS News reported on its website that the “analysis showed that as kids got older, car seat safety and proper restraint techniques went down. As age increased, children were more likely to sit in the front seat of a car unrestrained, despite the guidelines.” CBS quotes Macy as saying, “Further development and dissemination of culturally specific programs that have demonstrated success in promoting restraint use among minority children are necessary.”

In a Deseret (UT) News post, Emily Eyring also writes about the study, saying that it “shows that a frighteningly small percent of children are being placed in age-appropriate safety restraints.”

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