Booster seats, seat belts save children's lives
SEATTLE - Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death
for children ages two to 14, according to the National Highway
Traffic Safety Administration.
That's why the NW Insurance Council supports Child Passenger
Fortunately, there are proven ways to reduce deaths and injuries.
Studies show that children, ages four to eight, who use booster
seats are 59-percent less likely to be injured in a car accident
than those who only wear a seat belt.
"Children often lack the judgment to ensure their own safety,"
said Karl Newman, president of the NW Insurance Council. "Adults
should make sure each child has and uses safety restraints that
are appropriate for the child's age, weight and height."
According to the Washington Safety Restraint Coalition, many
deaths and injuries to children can be prevented by the proper
use of car seats, booster seats and safety belts. In fact, child
safety seats reduce fatal injury by 71 percent for infants and
by 54 percent for toddlers, 1 to 4 years old.
The Washington Safety Restraint Coalition and the NW Insurance
Council recommend the following guidelines for children's' car
seats and seat belts:
- Children weighing less than 20 pounds (and up to 1 year old)
should be in rear-facing safety seats placed in the back seat.
- Children up to 40 pounds should be in forward-facing safety
seats placed in the back seat.
- Children 40 to 80 pounds should be in a booster seat in the
- Children weighing more than 80 pounds should use an adult
safety belt system in the back seat up to age 13.
For more information on child seat safety, contact NW Insurance
Council at (800) 664-4942 or visit www.nwinsurance.org.
The NW Insurance Council is a nonprofit, consumer education
organization funded by member insurance companies.