Harford County Child Passenger Safety Team Offers Monthly Inspections
[August 6, 2103 Harford County, MD] - The first Harford County Child Passenger Safety Team Car Seat Inspection held on July 19th at Jones KIA in Bel Air was successful but organizers say they hoping for an even greater turnout at future child seat inspection locations. Tracy Whitman, Program Coordinator, MD Kids in Safety Seats, noted that 10 total car seats were inspected, 8 rear-facing and 2 forward-facing. Common problems, Whitman observed, were the wrong size seat, recalled or expired seats, and incorrect harness or improper installation.
Bel Air Police Chief Leo Matrangola, whose agency is helping to coordinate inspections, says the next Safety Seat Inspection will be held Wednesday, August 7th from 3 to 6 PM at the Havre de Grace Ambulance Corp, 1601 Level Road, Havre de Grace. The public is invited, there is no fee for the service, but reservations are necessary. Starting this month Safety Seat Inspections will be held at various locations in Harford County on the first Wednesday of each month.
To prepare for the inspection, caregivers should:
- arrive with car seat(s) already installed in the vehicle to the best of their ability o bring both the vehicle and safety seat(s) owner's manuals with them
- if possible, have the child present as well to verify the correct fit
- be prepared to ask questions and be involved in the seat checking process
Technicians will then check child seats for proper seat selection, installation and harness use, teach caregivers how to make corrections and answer caregiver questions.
Lt. Matthew Kail, Commander of the Bel Air Barrack of the Maryland State Police, says police see too many times where children are injured in car crashes, [even minor ones], where injuries could have been avoided by having a child safety seat properly installed. "Police simply want to help parents and drivers keep their child passengers safe and minimize the child's risk for injury during a crash", Kail says, adding, "The Harford County Law Enforcement Community is committed to protecting children through the proper installation of safety seats. Please join us at one of our upcoming safety seat inspections."
Registration for one of the Wednesday sessions or for a list of all the county dates and times can be made by calling the Harford County Child Passenger Safety Line at 410-638-4510. A list of dates and sites may also be found at www.mdkiss.org, click on "car seat inspections."