It was easy to make sure Peyton was in a seatbelt when she was younger. The 5 point harness car seats made it easy to know she was secure. Now that she’s bigger it’s still important to know she is secure. She’s out of the 5 point harness and in a booster seat. Peyton also like to be independent and buckle her own seatbelt. Since I’m not the one buckling her in any longer I try to do bi-weekly checks on the fit of her booster to ensure it still fits her and does not need any adjustments.
Every 33 seconds a child under 13 is involved in a car crash in the United States. For younger children, car seats can dramatically reduce the risk of fatality or injury – but over half of car seats are either installed or used incorrectly. For older children, buckling up is critical. A full 50% of children age 8-14 who were killed in car crashes from 2011-2015 were not restrained.
That’s why we want parents and caregivers to know about the importance of making sure their child is safely restrained—whether that’s selecting the right car seat for their child’s age and size, or making sure that older kids (8-14) always buckle their seat belts and sit in the backseat.
As parents, we all want to do the right thing to keep our children safe and sound. This spring, the Ad Council and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) are unveiling new PSAs to address these important issues. First, is the up to date car seat safety information like the tips found in the fun new video series “The Wide World of Car Seats.”
The right car seat can make all the difference in a motor vehicle crash. And car crashes are a leading cause of death for children 1 to 13 years old. But despite their best intentions, many parents may not realize their child isn’t in the right seat. For example, many parents move their children to the next restraint type (car seat, booster seat, seat belt) too soon. To make sure you have the right seat for your child, visit SaferCar.gov/TheRightSeat.
And just when you think you’ve got this parenting thing down, your child becomes a “tween” and you enter a whole new world. To help with travel safety, the Ad Council and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) are unveiling new PSAs featuring characters from Fox’s upcoming summer road trip adventure Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul. The PSAs remind parents and caregivers that even if kids argue and plead, parents should stand firm and always insist that their kids buckle up and sit in the back seat (the safest place for kids under the age of 13).
Peyton is a fan of Diary of a Wimpy kid. We just started reading them together. The series is also a huge hit with 10-year-old nephew. I think it’s great that the kids can see some of thier favorite characters come to life on the big screen and talk about seat belt safety.
We’ve always talked about seat belt safety in our home. The rule is we do not back out of the driveway until everyone is buckled up. Since it’s always been this way, Peyton doesn’t think anything different of it. She hops in the car, buckles up and we are ready to go!
When we take long road trips and it is tempting to lay down I always remind Peyton of the importance of staying in her seatbelt. To make her more comfortable I bring extra pillows and blankets so she can use them to get comfortable still staying securely fasten in her seat belt and booster seat.
Per data from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), an estimated 69,000 tweens are injured every year in car crashes and 61% of 14-year-old children killed in 2015 car crashes were unrestrained at the time of the crash. Even though life as a parent is full of compromises, seat belt safety should never be up for negotiation. That’s why the new PSAs encourage us to: “Never give up until they buckle up!”
For more information or if you need more tips to convince your tween to buckle up, visit SaferCar.gov/KidsBuckleUp. If you have a great tip, join the conversation on social media using: #KidsBuckleUp.