September 17-23, 2017  (Child Passenger Safety Week) / September 23, 2017 (National Seat Check Saturday)

Car crashes are a leading cause of death for children 1 to 13 years old. Many deaths and injuries can be prevented by proper use of car seats, boosters and seat belts. Getting safety information and car seat instructions to parents and caregivers is crucial to saving young lives.

The information below comes from

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) primary goal for child passenger safety is to make sure all parents and caregivers are correctly using the right car seats (rear-facing car seats, forward-facing car seats, booster seats, or seat belts) for their children’s ages and sizes.

During Child Passenger Safety Week, September 17-23, 2017, many communities will have Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians on-hand to provide education on how to use car seats, booster seats, and seat belts for children. Technicians can also help educate consumers about choosing the right car seat for their child, the importance of registering that car seat with its manufacturer, and what to expect if the seat is subject to a safety recall.

The week concludes with National Seat Check Saturday on September 23, when certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians across the country will be available at car seat events to offer advice and instruction to parents and caregivers.


Lives lost and injuries
  • Car crashes are a leading cause of death for children.
  • Every 33 seconds in 2015, 1 child under the age of 13 was involved in a crash.
  • From 2011 to 2015, there were 3,194 children under 13 killed and an estimated 559,000 children injured in car crashes.
  • In 2015 alone, an estimated 116,000 children under 13 were injured as passengers in car crashes.
  • On average, nearly 2 children under 13 were killed, and 319 children were injured every day in 2015 while riding in cars, SUVs, pickups, and vans.
  • From 2011 to 2015, there were 1,692 “tweens” (8 to 14 years old) killed in passenger vehicles.
  • In 2015, the 8-12 age group had the highest number of fatalities (236) among children.
  • In 2015, over one-third (35%) of children under 13 killed in car crashes were not restrained in car seats, booster seats, or seat belts.


Car seats, booster seats, and seat belts save lives
  • In 2015, among children under 5, car seats saved an estimated 248 lives. A total of 316 children could have survived if they had been buckled up 100 percent of the time.


Car seats work best when used correctly
  • In passenger cars, car seats reduce the risk of fatal injury by 71 percent for infants and by 54 percent for toddlers. For infants and toddlers in light trucks, the corresponding reductions were 58 percent and 59 percent, respectively.
  • Most parents are confident that they have correctly installed their child’s car seat, but in most cases (59%) the seat has not been installed correctly.
  • According to NHTSA data, in 2015, about 25.8 percent of children 4 to 7 were prematurely moved to seat belts, when they should have been riding in booster seats.


Child passenger safety laws
  • For the past 30 years, all 50 States, the District of Columbia, and all U.S. territories have had laws requiring children to be buckled up while riding in cars.
  • States now require children to ride in appropriate car seats or booster seats until as old as age 9.


  • Remember to read and carefully follow the installation instructions included with a car seat as well as the vehicle owner’s manual. Failure to do this can lead to incorrect installation, exposing a child passenger to the risk of injury or death in a crash.
  • All children under 13 should always ride in the back seat.


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