Anyone who has driven around Santa Monica with a child in his or her car understands that safety is always a paramount concern. The reality is that keeping your child safe in the car is a combination of a multiplicity of factors. If you are a parent or a caregiver of a child then you need to know the facts. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, motor vehicle crashes were the leading cause of death for children between the ages of 3 to 14 in 2006. Statistics show that every day in America an average of 4 children in this age group were killed in a traffic accident in 2008.

Child safety is crucial, especially due to the fact that cars are designed for fully-grown adults; consequently, their safety equipment and features are as well. What this means is that you need to keep your child’s exact size in mind when determining the appropriate safety measures.

Back Seat is Best
One of the best decisions that you can make for your children is to have them ride in the back seat. Studies show that for newborns to 8 year-olds, there is a 64 percent decrease in fatalities and a 31 percent decrease for 9 to 12 year-olds when they are placed in the back seat.

Beware of Airbags
While airbags are great devices for adults, they can actually cause harm to children.  In fact, one of the largest contributing factors to child fatalities when they ride in the front seat is the deployment of airbags.  Airbags are not designed to deploy at the appropriate height for a child.  In addition, airbags can be dangerous for children in car seats.

Use Seat Belts
Seat belts also save lives in car accidents.  These devices have shown to reduce deaths by 45 to 60 percent and lower the risk of serious injury to the head, chest and extremities by 50 to 83 percent. 

Check Child Safety Restraints
Even if child safety restraints are utilized they are often applied incorrectly. It is important to ensure that the restraint straps are properly fitted. They should be tight to the body, but not to where they are excessively uncomfortable. Loose restraints allow the body more movement and greater chance of striking a hard surface or even worse, possibly allowing for ejection from the vehicle. When car seats are properly installed, they can lower the risk of death by 70 percent for infants and by 47 to 54 percent for toddlers, ages 1 to 4 years.  It has also been estimated that car seats reduce the need for hospitalization for children ages four years and younger.

Damages in Southern California Car Accident Cases
If your child has been hurt in a Southern California car accident caused by a negligent driver, you may be able to pursue compensation for injuries. To find out if you have a case against the other driver or if you need assistance with obtaining a fair settlement from the insurance company, contact an experienced Santa Monica car accident attorney at Steinberg Injury Lawyers.

We represent clients in Los Angeles County, Riverside County, Ventura County, Orange County, San Bernardino County, San Diego County and throughout California.

Contact us today by calling (800) 989-6385 or filling out our online form.

Peter Steinberg
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Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney Since 1982