We are thrilled that Allana Pinkerton, Child Passenger Safety Advocate for Diono has given us some important advice for parents who are putting in a car seat. Read on for some common mistakes, advice and more!
#1. What are the common mistakes that parents make while installing a car seat?
There are several common mistakes parents make when installing the car seat. First, the car seat must be installed tight enough that it moves less than one inch side to side, front to back. A loose seat puts more crash forces on the child and can cause injury. Second, is not locking the seat belt. Again, the car seat will be too loose during a crash and this may cause serious injury. Some parents place the car seat in the wrong direction; infant seats are rear-facing only. Convertibles can be rear-facing or forward-facing. Combination seats only go forward-facing. Like most parents, all they want is baby to comfortable so they tend to keep the harness too loose. A loose harness can cause serious injury or the child can be ejected out of the seat during a crash. A proper fitting harness does not have to be super tight, just snug enough that you cannot fold the webbing between your thumb and finger when checked at the collar bone. Lastly, if you install the seat with LATCH, be sure you attach the connectors to the correct anchors. This information can be found in your vehicle owner’s manual.
#2 How is Diono® committed to providing car seat safety to families?
Diono® is committed to providing car seat safety to families by designing and manufacturing products which exceed the federal safety standards. When we design products, we keep all types of survival crashes in mind, from fender benders to severe impacts. Our products utilize materials that are strong, like a steel frame and EPS foam which helps reduce energy on the body. EPS foam is present throughout the entire car seat.
#3 What are her expert tips on what parents must know about Safe Summer travel with a car seat?
Summer is a fun time for families to wind down, relax and play! It’s not the time, though, to let your guard down regarding safety. While it is perfectly fine to break your routine and eat ice cream for breakfast and eggs for dinner, always be sure your child rides in their car seat no matter where you travel. Laws of physics do not change while you’re on vacation. When you leave the pool or beach, be sure your child is wearing clothes so their harness or seat belt is not on their bare skin. If you are traveling by air, purchase a seat for your child and install a FAA approved car seat on the airplane to keep child safe during take offs, landings and turbulence. Lastly, be sure to cover an unoccupied car seat while it is in the car. Buckles can become quite hot in the summer sun.
#4 What is the must-know advice for properly installing a car seat?
Car seats do not have to be difficult to install. In fact, it can be easy if parents and caregivers take a few important steps to help make the job a little easier. The best advice I can give parents to properly install a car seat is to read the manual. There are many pieces of important information in the manuals which should be read carefully before installing the seat. This will help ensure the seat is installed tight and correctly and will properly restrain their child. Take your time and follow all of the directions. If they are unclear, most manufacturers have videos online or you may call them directly. They have customer service staff to help you. It’s always good to have a certified Child Passenger Safety Technician check your seat to be sure it is correctly installed. You can find a local technician at http://cert.safekids.org