The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

April 1, 2013

Make sure your child is properly restrained in car


Enid News & Eagle

— Riding in a car can be dangerous for children.

According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, car crashes are the No. 1 killer of children ages 1-12 in the United States.

Unfortunately, sometimes a parent or other adult can take all the precautions possible, and something bad still can happen.

However, other times something as simple as having a child in the proper restraint system literally can be the difference between life and death. Not only is it the wisest and safest thing to do, it’s also the law.

According to state law, regardless of a child’s seating position in a vehicle, children under 6 must be protected in a properly installed child passenger restraint system. Children 6 through 12 must be protected by use of either a properly installed child passenger restraint system or a safety belt.

In Enid, the fine for violating the child restraint law is $104.

For safety’s sake, there are a few simple rules to follow:

• Select a car seat based on your child’s age and size. Choose a seat that fits in your vehicle, and use it on every trip, every time.

• Always refer to your specific car seat manufacturer’s instructions, read the vehicle owner’s manual on how to install the car seat using the seat belt or lower anchors and tethers for children (LATCH) system, and check height and weight limits.

• To maximize safety, keep your child in the car seat for as long as possible, as long as the child fits within the manufacturer’s height and weight requirements.

• Keep your child in the back seat at least through age 12.

The main thing to remember, though, is it’s all about safety. Kids often can’t take care of themselves. It’s up to the adults to do that.