To see if your car seat is properly installed, find a certified passenger safety technician in your area. Feel free to ask your healthcare provider or the hospital where you will be delivering for this information BEFORE your baby is born.
- A baby should have a safety car seat for the very first ride from the hospital. Although the tendency is to hold a new baby in your arms, this is not at all safe if there is an impact. An infant’s car restraint should have the words “dynamically or crash tested,” and state that it complies with the Federal Vehicle Safety Standard 213. The car seat should be placed in the middle of the back seat.
- NEVER place a rear-facing seat in front of a passenger side airbag.
- The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that children should ride in rear-facing child safety seats as long as possible. New research indicates toddlers are more than 5 times safer, according to the AAP, riding rear-facing in a convertible car safety seat until they reach the maximum height and weight recommendation for that particular model, or at least to the age of 2. (For more information, visit www.aap.org/advocacy/releases/carseat2011.htm)
- Always keep the car window closed and the door locked nearest the baby.
- Never leave an infant or small child unattended in a car, not even for a moment.