Cars have been around longer than child car safety seats, that’s for sure. The first child car seat was created in 1962. Nowadays, there are even facilities and experts in many counties, including Whatcom, where new parents can go to have their car safety seat evaluated and properly installed, as well as classes right here in Bellingham. Here is the link to car seat safety techs in Bellingham. Does all this make a difference, you might ask, or is this just one more thing parents need to buy that make their toddlers cry foul?

Data from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reveal that yes, contrary to what your babies and toddlers may tell you, put them in their car seat. Car seats improve safety dramatically. Changes in child restraints are credited with these improvements. Research and engineering tests show that rear-facing seats are far safer, reducing fatal injury risk by approximately 75% up to age three, and nearly half for kids between four and eight years old. Lawmakers have responded and require car safety seats for all children, though they vary widely state to state. Here is Washington’s law. You can’t leave St. Joe’s Hospital in Bellingham without having a child safety seat for your infant, by law. Here is the text of the child passenger law for Washington State.

Here’s the data:

Child passenger deaths were 52 percent lower in 2015 than in 1975.

The rate of car accident deaths per million children under the age of 13 has decreased 78 percent overall since 1975 when including child passenger, pedestrian and bicycle accidents.

Only 13 percent of passenger vehicle child occupant deaths in 2015 occurred with the child in the front seat, down from 46 percent in 1975.

In 1975 infants – babies under 12 months of age – had a much higher child passenger fatality rate per capita than children of other ages, but this gap narrowed over the years as rear-facing infant restraint laws went into place. In 2015 there was little difference in the passenger fatality rates among children of different ages.

Since 1975 child passenger fatality rates have dropped 80 percent for infants, 66 percent for children ages one to three, 52 percent for children ages four to eight, and 48 percent for children ages nine to 12.

Those numbers prove how valuable those child car safety seats truly are. Still, even with all the laws and engineering improvements in the design and manufacture of child passenger safety seats, car accidents still cause one of every four unintentional injury deaths among children. For kids younger than 13, car crashes are still the leading cause of death.

If your child was killed in a car accident, you are feeling the effects of events so devastating no parent should have to go through that, ever. You will need help as you navigate the complexities of the car insurance settlement process as you grieve. Please contact me today to see if I can help you. It is a free call, and I can assess the details of the crash and may be able to fight for a settlement many times more than what you could do on your own.

Further reading: 

How Bill Coats Law can help

Tips for buying car seats for kids

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