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Researchers Say Few Follow Recommendations for Child Safety in Cars

A mother buckling her baby into a car seat.

Wearing a seat belt can protect you from serious injury when you have been involved in even a minor car crash. Children need even more protections as they are smaller and are more vulnerable in a crash. However, research from the University of Michigan shows that many parents and children are not following the recommended guidelines for child safety harnesses in the car.

A study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine shows that few children remain in rear-facing car seats after they turn 1, fewer than 2 percent of children over 7 sit in a booster seat, and many who are older than 6 sit in the front seat.

The American Academy of Pediatrics updated their guidelines for child car safety and recommended that children remain in rear-facing safety seats until they turn 2.

Laws for child-safety seats vary by state, but most recommend that children stay in rear-facing seats until they reach a certain weight limit, and many safety advocates recommend they remain rear-facing even longer, as it is safer for small children. Most also require that children be at least 8 (and a certain weight) before sitting in the front seat.

The study looked at three years of data from the National Survey on the Use of Booster Seats from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The researchers also interviewed drivers and collected independent data.

Researchers also found a correlation between safety belt use and race and economic status. Minorities and poor families were more likely to forego child safety seats or to transition children to adult belts earlier than recommended.

North Carolina Personal Injury Lawyers

If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Contact the Law Offices of James Scott Farrin at 1-866-900-7078 to find out if one of our North Carolina personal injury attorneys may be able to help you!