Havre Daily News - News you can use

Car seat safety is critical


April 21, 2014

Many people are wondering what is the law on child passenger seats and where can we get them checked.

The Montana law for child passenger seats:

Section 1. Section 61-9-420, MCA, is amended to read: "61-9-420. Child safety restraint systems — standards — exemptions. (1) If a child under 6 years of age and weighing less than 60 pounds is a passenger in a motor vehicle, that motor vehicle must be equipped with one child safety restraint for each child in the vehicle and each child must be properly restrained.

The child safety restraint must be appropriate for the height and weight of the child as indicated by manufacturer standards.

(2) The department shall by rule establish standards in compliance with 61-9-419 through 61-9-423 and applicable federal standards for approved types of child safety restraint systems.

(3) The department may by rule exempt from the requirements of subsection (1) a child who because of a physical or medical condition or body size cannot be placed in a child safety restraint."

Even though the law says 6 years old and 60 pounds, safest practice is 8 years old and 80 pounds. Many people think just because they are over this age and weight, they do not need to buckle up. It is still a law for all occupants to be buckled in a motor vehicle. If everyone in the vehicle is not buckled, then they can become a projectile and injure or kill the other occupants.  

Hill County Buckle up Coalition has a permanent fitting station at the Boys & Girls Club of the Hi-Line. This is a place where you can have your car seats checked, make sure they are installed properly and insure they are the right fit for your child. We also provides car seats for those who cannot afford them. Please call Mary at 265-6206, ext. 301, for an appointment, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

According to Safe Kids Worldwide:

• Motor vehicle crashes are the number one cause of death among children ages 1 to 19.

• Children ages 2 to 5 who use safety belts prematurely are four times more likely to suffer a serious head injury in a crash than those in child safety seats or booster seats.

• Of those children ages 12 and under who died in vehicle crashes in 2011, 33 percent were unrestrained.

• Children should ride in the back seat until they are at least 13 years old.

See more at: http://www.safekids.org/child-passenger-safety#sthash.UWxz0Qhs.dpufDid You Know?

Mary Owens

Hill County Buckle-up

Montana Coordinator

HELP Committee/Boys & Girls Club

500 1st Ave.

Havre, MT  59501

406-265-6206, x301


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