According to a NHTSA report, more than a third of the total of children under the age of 13 who have died in car crashes in 2011, did not wear seat belts and were not in car seats.
“Safety is our top priority, particularly when it comes to protecting our children – who are our most vulnerable passengers,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “Parents and caregivers can be the first line of defense by ensuring their children are correctly secured in the right seat for their size and age, and by buckling up themselves.”
Auto crashes are still a leading cause of death for children and in 2011 almost two children and were killed and 338 other injured each day while riding vehicles. Unrestrained fatalities, with no seat belt or car seat, vary depending on each type of vehicle: SUVs 55%, vans 40%, pick-ups 43% and cars 24%. NHTSA emphasizes the fact that no matter of the vehicle’s size or type, children should always wear a seat belt or be placed in a car seat or booster.
Between 1975 and 2011 almost 10,000 lives have been saved by child restraints in passenger vehicles for children under the age of 5 and more than 260 lives have been saved in 2011.