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Improper Use of Child Safety Seats Can Be Disastrous

Arizona recently recognized Child Passenger Safety Week, and during that time, parents and motorists around the state were reminded about some key points to help keep children safe in the car.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that nearly 75 percent of all child safety seats are improperly installed or used. The failure to use the seats in the recommended fashion could leave a child vulnerable to injury in the unfortunate event of a crash. Children in Arizona seem particularly vulnerable, with the state having the dubious distinction of being fourth in the nation for child passenger fatalities.

Arizona Laws Governing Child Safety Seats

Arizona law mandates the use of a child safety seat by any child who is under the age of five or weighs less than 40 pounds. Unlike many other states, however, Arizona does not follow the NHTSA's recommendation that booster seats be used by children under the age of seven – several motions have been made to expand the breadth of the law, but they have all failed in the Arizona legislature.

Safety advocates and law enforcement officials want parents to know that keeping their kids safe might involve effort beyond what the law requires, and the NHTSA agrees. Their “Four Steps for Kids” guide provides comprehensive information for parents detailing the proper age, size and use information for rear-facing car seats, forward-facing seats, booster seats and seat belts alike. The NHTSA also sponsors dozens of child seat safety inspection stations around the state where both English and Spanish-speaking parents can get help and answers to their questions about myriad safety issues.

What do I do if my Child Has Been Injured in a Car Accident?

If, despite your best efforts, your child has been injured in a motor vehicle, consider contacting an experienced personal injury attorney in your area. Doing so is an important step toward protecting your legal rights and finding answers to your questions.