Parents in Westmeath are being urged to have their child’s car seat checked, as research from the Road Safety Authority (RSA ) indicates that as many as four out of five child car seats are incorrectly fitted.
The RSA ‘Check it Fits’ service will be visiting Westmeath from March 30 to April 1, where child car seat installation experts will be available to ensure car seats and restraints are correctly fitted. The service takes between 10 and 15 minutes, is free of charge and offers parents and guardians reassurance that their child is safe while travelling in the car.
Since ‘Check it Fits’ began in October 2013, the RSA service has checked more than 16,000 child car seats and restraints across Ireland. Of these, 82 per cent required some adjustment. Worryingly, 75 per cent of seats required a major adjustment, of which 4 per cent were deemed not fit for purpose and condemned, meaning they have the potential to cause injury or even death in the event of a collision.
If your child’s car seat or restraint is incorrectly fitted, the ‘Check it Fits’ experts will advise on how to fix the problem, demonstrate how to fit the restraint correctly and answer any queries participants might have to avoid potential serious or fatal injury in the event of a collision.
Aisling Leonard, senior road safety promotion officer for the RSA, said: “Almost two out of five children killed are passengers and Garda reports into collisions indicate that one in 10 children were not wearing a seatbelt or using a child restraint in 2014. More recent statistics have shown an increase in child passenger fatalities on the road.
“The reality is that if a child’s car seat isn’t fitted correctly, it could lead to a serious or fatal injury in the event of a collision. Having a correctly fitted car seat is a simple measure parents, grandparents, and guardians can take to ensure children are safe while travelling by car.”
For more information on Check it Fits and for an up-to-date schedule of upcoming road shows, visit www.rsa.ie/checkitfits