17 Jul Car Seat Safety – Get A Great Start To Road Trip Season
Summer is in full swing and families are hitting the roads to enjoy some rest and recreation. Whether you’re planning a stay-cation around the city or an out-of-town getaway, driving and car safety should figure high on your list of preparations. This week’s post looks at a few tips about keeping your children safe with the proper use of up-to-date car seats.
Did You Know? Car Seats Have Expiration Dates
The government doesn’t require them, but labels with expiration or useful life dates are standard on all car seats sold in Canada. Check yours for a date and replace the seat immediately if the seat is:
- Has been through a crash – even a minor one
- Appears damaged or cracked
- It’s older than ten years
Although a seat may appear to be a solid piece of hardware, repeated use, exposure to sunlight and time in itself can change its protective value. If you don’t see a label, follow the link at the bottom of our post to visit Transport Canada’s list of car seat manufacturers, brands, and useful life dates.
Don’t Use A Second-Hand Seat
Never buy a used car seat or give one away – even if it appears to be in fine condition.
In fact, the Canada Consumer Product Safety prohibits seat owners from advertising, selling or giving away car seats. A used seat may be missing important parts or it may have gone through a major crash in the past without any visible damage. Over time, trapped food, liquid spills, and other materials may interfere with the seat’s proper function.
Since every model is different, ensure that you have the seat’s user manual, and follow the instructions closely. Buying a new seat, certified to Canada Motor Vehicle Safety Standards, is the best way to keep abreast of the latest in safety technology and standards.
Get The Right Fit
- Make sure the seat you buy is appropriate for each individual child’s height and weight.
- Your child should be comfortable, but the fit should be snug and the seat should not move beyond 2.5 cm from side to side where the belt secures the seat down.
- If your child wants to be covered, place a blanket on top after the seat and your child is properly buckled. Avoid placing bulky items behind or under the child.
By keeping your child’s car seat current and using it properly, you and your family can look forward to arriving at your destination safely and to enjoying some summer fun.
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