Booster seats save lives. I know that first hand. I’ve seen it. I’m thankful that my wife and I continue to put our 9-year old son in a booster seat.
Climate change is important to me. Helping promote a better understanding of evolution is important to me. But this is the most important story I have ever written. See that picture below? My wife and son were in that car when it was struck last week.
Two people inside this car survived because of a seatbelt and a booster seat.
My wife was wearing her seatbelt and my 9-year old son was in a booster seat (CARS theme, you know Lightning McQueen and friends). The firefighters at the scene, the paramedics, and his doctor all said it would have been a very different story had he not been in a booster seat. The point of the booster seat is to raise the child up so the seatbelt does not go across their neck or face and that it rests in the lap, not on their stomach. I’ve known some parents of similar aged kids who do not use a booster seat. I can’t say why. Maybe they think their child is too cool for it, maybe they think their child is too old for it, maybe they just don’t know better.
Well, this should help. Go to this link. It’s from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and has all kinds of advice for using a booster seat or car seat for the younger kids. My son is nine, this is what they say about his age:
8 – 12 Years
Keep your child in a booster seat until he or she is big enough to fit in a seat belt properly. For a seat belt to fit properly, the lap belt must lie snugly across the upper thighs, not the stomach. The shoulder belt should lie snugly across the shoulder and chest and not cross the neck or face. Remember: your child should still ride in the back seat because it’s safer there.
Here’s more. These come courtesy of the CDC.
Restraint use among young children often depends upon the driver’s seat belt use. Almost 40% of children riding with unbelted drivers were themselves unrestrained.
More of the older children (45% of 8-12 year olds) were not buckled up compared with younger children (one-third of 1-7 year olds; one-fourth of infants under 1) in 2011.
Booster seat use reduces the risk for serious injury by 45% for children aged 4–8 years when compared with seat belt use alone.
In the United States during 2011, more than 650 children ages 12 years and younger died as occupants in motor vehicle crashes.
Of the children who died in a crash in 2011, 33% were not buckled up.
Look at these pictures, imagine what happened inside this car during the wreck. I can’t even think about what could have happened had my son not been in a booster seat or worse, been sitting in the front seat.
Put your child in a booster seat. Put your child in the back seat. Don’t think, ‘It won’t happen to me.’ Don’t pretend your child is too good for a booster seat. Don’t fool yourself.
Your child’s life depends on it.