SERVICES > PREGNANCY & CHILDBIRTH > BUCKLING UP YOUR BABY
Whenever you head out, whether you’re driving or walking, it’s important to securely fasten your baby into the car seat, stroller or infant carrier.
You might be surprised to learn there are more than 17,000 stroller- and carrier-related injuries each year, usually caused by children falling out of strollers or being injured when they tip over.
These accidents often cause scrapes, bumps and bruises. But many children injured – actually about 25% of stroller injuries and 35% of carrier injuries – wind up being treated for concussions and other traumatic brain injuries.
To keep the risk of an infant stroller or carrier accident low, follow these tips:
During 2014 alone, 602 children under age 13 died as occupants in motor vehicle crashes in the U.S., and more than 121,350 were injured.
Many of those deaths and injuries could have been prevented.
…studies show a 67% reduction in the risk of serious injuries when children ride in well-fitted, properly installed car seats.
Though many people don’t know this, you can visit a local fire, rescue squad or highway patrol station to make sure the car seat is installed properly.
Just call first to ask if the station offers this service and, if so, to find out when the experts will be there so you don’t waste a trip.
To better protect your child when you’re on the road, follow these tips:
Every state has different age, height and/or weight requirements for when child safety seats must be used.
Fines for non-compliance in Virginia and Tennessee, as of 2016, are $50, and fines in states such as North Carolina can be significantly higher. Also, some states, including Tennessee, require children up to age 8 to be in booster seats.
The Governors Highway Safety Association provides a
summary of child passenger safety laws by state.
When you travel out of the area, be sure to check the requirements for the states you’ll be travelling through.
Check the recommended weight and height ranges for your car seat, stroller or carrier.
If your child is too light or heavy for the one you have, you should find another option.
Seats made for a newborn don’t usually work for a toddler, and vice versa. And something that works for a toddler won’t do the trick for a 7 or 8 year old.
Don’t trust your child’s safety to a device that was made for a smaller or larger child.
Search online or contact the manufacturer to see if there have been any recalls on your car seat, stroller or carrier, especially if it’s an older one you used with another child or got from a friend.
Problems can range from faulty parts – such as latches and buckles – to weak frames to flammable materials.
The U.S. Department of Transportation has a list that lets you
search car seat recalls by manufacturer, and other sites also list recalls for seats, as well as strollers, carriers and other products.
Sometimes a recalled product can be fixed with a simple solution that’s available free from the manufacturer. If a fix isn’t available and the recall is serious enough, they might replace the entire unit at no charge.
And if there aren’t any known problems with the device, you’ll have greater peace of mind having checked.
Worst case – even if you’re stuck with the bill for something new, at least you won’t be relying on a faulty product for the safety of your precious little one.
You can learn more about the pregnancy and birthing care available at Wellmont.
*According to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
Call anytime for an OB/GYN referral. Nurses are available now to help you find a doctor and answer your questions.
Or call a nurse: 877‑230‑6877.
Wellmont offers childbirth, baby care, breastfeeding and new sibling classes in the Tri-Cities.
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