The Elgin Police Department, in partnership with AAA, will be hosting a child car seat safety event on National Seat Check Saturday, September 19th, from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. at 200 North Grove Avenue in downtown Elgin.
Every day in America, too many children are riding in the wrong car seats or are completely unrestrained. To help combat the issue, the police department will partner with AAA to conduct a car seat safety event. At this event, certified child passenger safety technicians will be on hand to check car seats for proper installation and educate parents and caregivers on how to choose the correct car seats and install them properly in their vehicles.
The event is part of the police department's participation in National Child Passenger Safety Week that runs from September 13th thru September 19th and is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). This event is one of 80 events in Illinois sponsored by AAA, Illinois Secretary of State and the Illinois Department of Transportation.
"Every 34 seconds a child under the age of 13 is involved in a crash," said Sergeant Kevin Senne of the Elgin Police Departments Traffic Unit, "using car seats that are age and size appropriate is the best way to keep your child safe." NHTSA recommends keeping children rear-facing as long as possible up to the top height or weight allowed by their particular seats. Once a child outgrows the rear-facing car seat, they are ready to travel in a forward-facing car seat with a harness.
After outgrowing their car seats, children should be placed in booster seats. While Illinois law states a child must be in an appropriate car seat or booster seat until their eighth birthday, some eight year old children are not tall enough for the seat belt to fit them correctly. These kids need to stay in a booster seat until they are taller-4'9" is the recommended height.
Remember: In Illinois, children are required to be in a car seat or booster seat until at least age 8 and all children younger than 13 should ride in the back seat. For more information on Child Passenger Safety nhtsa.gov or buckleupillinois.org.
Also included at the free event will be bicycle helmet fittings, bicycle registration, and also a bicycle rodeo that children can participate in. There will also be booths at the event staffed by The Boys and Girls Club of Elgin, YMCA of Elgin, and MADD.
Chief Swoboda stated, "I wish to extend my appreciation to AAA, The Boys and Girls Club of Elgin, YMCA of Elgin, and MADD, for their participation and continued support in community outreach with the police department. It is events like these that bring our community together to exemplify our commitment to one another. This is yet another example of what makes the Elgin community so special."