State troopers launch Operation Precious Cargo - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

State troopers launch Operation Precious Cargo

February 15, 2007

Thomasville-- Georgia State Law requires that you properly restrain all children under the age of 6 in a safety or booster seat in the back seat of your car.

This week, state troopers aren't just enforcing that law.  They also want to educate adults on how to properly secure children. 

Teiko Gooch says one of her most important jobs as a mom is keeping her kids buckled up in the car.  "You want them to be as safe as possible I mean it's a dangerous place just driving on the road," she said.

But GSP Sergeant Ronald Warren says some parents may not realize how dangerous it is when they don't buckle kids up.  "We still come across children who aren't in seat belts, we still on occasion come across parents who are driving with their children in their lap," Warren said. 

That's why the GSP launched Operation Precious Cargo.  "State troopers will be out patrolling the roads trying to educate the public and give them some information as it relates to seat belts and child safety restraint seats," said Warren. 

When picking out a car seat for your child, make sure you get one that's appropriate for your child's height and weight.  After they outgrow that, at around forty pounds, its probably time to get a booster seat.

"If we do encounter a child that's not properly restrained out on the road, we'll try to get the information to the parent, we'll check the child restraint seat, and first hand do an inspection," said Warren.

State troopers say even though many parents have restraints in their cars, they don't use them correctly.  "Sometimes those buckles are not fastened properly. And sometimes we come across where the child is just not sitting properly in the restraint seat," said Warren.

Be sure that the safety seat is installed properly in the car seat, and also make sure that all shoulder straps, and the breast plate are fastened securely.

"Look at the statistics.  It's a proven fact that children need to be restrained," said Gooch.

"We hope that in some way we can get the message out there so that if we do work a traffic accident and there's a child involved, that that child's going to be safe because it was properly restrained," said Warren.

Troopers say educating parents on all the facts will go a long way to protecting that precious cargo they're carrying.

The GSP says all kids from ages 6 to 17 who ride in a car van or truck must wear a seat belt, and the back seat is the safest place for kids under 13.

 

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