Children must be properly restrained - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Children must be properly restrained

May 27, 2008

Albany -  Georgia law requires any child under the age of 18 to be properly restrained by a safety belt.

Children under the age of six are also supposed to be in a safety seat and the state recommend children under four foot nine use a booster seat. Ninty-five percent of child safety seat are improperly installed.

Seat belts aren't designed to fit children with smaller bodies. They need help, a safety or booster seat, and parents should want their children in those seats as long as possible.

"With each step you take you actually reduce, you lose some safety so we want to keep children in the internal harness as long as we can, " said Michele DeMott, Safe Communities Coordinator.

Manufacturers now make seats with internal harnesses for children up to 65 pounds. At 30 pounds it will keep three year old Jay Austin secure.

"You want the harness retainer clip at the armpit level that's going to hold the harnesses onto his shoulders in the event of a crash and you want you shouldn't be able to pinch the material lengthwise that's the test that we use if you can pinch the material lengthwise it's not snug enough," said DeMott.

At five Jay's sister Mia has outgrown the internal restraint, but by using her booster seat, the regular seat belt is a perfect fit.

"What we're looking for is for it to come across her upper thigh and hip bones, come across her sternum and come across he shoulder. We don't want it to cut into her neck, that's why we've got the adjustable shoulder harness so that it's good and comfortable for her, but so that it's going to raise her up enough so the safety belt fits her properly," said DeMott.

That's key, a seat belt fitting you properly, if it rests across a child's belly it can create something Emergency Rooms call seat belt syndrome and cause internal injuries. The best rule of thumb is this.

"Before they go into a three point lap and shoulder belt they should be able to sit with their back against the back of the vehicle seat with their knees bent of the front of the vehicle seat and feet touching the floor and be able to sit that way for the entire ride," said DeMott.

If they can't, then they're not ready to give up that extra layer of protection that could mean the difference between life and death.

Experts say if you think it's cheaper to take a ticket than properly restrain your child think again. A reasonable child seat can cost as little as $40.00, a ticket will cost you $75.00.

If you can't afford a child safety seat you can get help to make sure your child is properly restrained.

In Baker, Dougherty, Seminole, Thomas, and Worth Counties the Health Departments and in Mitchell County, the Fire Department offers an hour long class on child safety restraints. The class is only $10.00 and at the end parents will receive a child safety seat.

You must have your child enrolled in Medicaid, Peach Care, or WICK to participate in the class.

Feedback: news@walb.com?subject=ChildrenShouldBeRestrained

  • More WALB News10 HeadlinesMore News HeadlinesMore>>

  • Coffee Co. Middle School student raises money for school employee

    Coffee Co. Middle School student raises money for school employee

    Monday, May 21 2018 10:31 PM EDT2018-05-22 02:31:09 GMT
    Caroline Maley. (Source: WALB)Caroline Maley. (Source: WALB)

    It's the small acts of kindness that leave a mark on many peoples lives.  Monday, a young girl from Coffee County Middle School did some reaching out to people in her community, to help out an employee at her school, and got more than what she expected. 

    More >>

    It's the small acts of kindness that leave a mark on many peoples lives.  Monday, a young girl from Coffee County Middle School did some reaching out to people in her community, to help out an employee at her school, and got more than what she expected.  

    More >>
  • Lt. Governor Casey Cagle made a pit stop in Albany ahead of elections

    Lt. Governor Casey Cagle made a pit stop in Albany ahead of elections

    Monday, May 21 2018 10:28 PM EDT2018-05-22 02:28:00 GMT
    Lt. Governor Casey Cagle held a mini press conference ahead of Tuesday's election. (Source:: WALB)Lt. Governor Casey Cagle held a mini press conference ahead of Tuesday's election. (Source:: WALB)
    Lt. Governor Casey Cagle held a mini press conference ahead of Tuesday's election. (Source:: WALB)Lt. Governor Casey Cagle held a mini press conference ahead of Tuesday's election. (Source:: WALB)

    Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle made a brief stop in Albany Monday, ahead of Tuesday's elections. 

    More >>

    Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle made a brief stop in Albany Monday, ahead of Tuesday's elections. 

    More >>
  • Former DA campaigns for Court of Appeals seat in South GA

    Former DA campaigns for Court of Appeals seat in South GA

    Monday, May 21 2018 7:46 PM EDT2018-05-21 23:46:20 GMT
    Ken Hodges held a press conference on Monday ahead of Tuesday's election. (Source: WALB)Ken Hodges held a press conference on Monday ahead of Tuesday's election. (Source: WALB)
    Ken Hodges held a press conference on Monday ahead of Tuesday's election. (Source: WALB)Ken Hodges held a press conference on Monday ahead of Tuesday's election. (Source: WALB)

    Former Dougherty District Attorney and Albany native Ken Hodges received the endorsement of a number of South Georgia law enforcement officials Monday. Hodges is running for the non partisan court of appeals seat in Tuesday's election.   

    More >>

    Former Dougherty District Attorney and Albany native Ken Hodges received the endorsement of a number of South Georgia law enforcement officials Monday. Hodges is running for the non partisan court of appeals seat in Tuesday's election.   

    More >>
Powered by Frankly