Elkhart County Sheriff's Department offer child car seat inspect - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Elkhart County Sheriff's Department offer child car seat inspections

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Car seat inspections were offered by the Elkhart County Sheriff's Department Car seat inspections were offered by the Elkhart County Sheriff's Department
The Center for Disease Control states motor vehicle injuries are the leading cause of death for children in the United States. The CDC also reports a study found 72 percent of nearly 3,500 car and booster seats observed were misused in a way that could increase a child's risk of injury during a crash. The Elkhart County Sheriff's Department is looking to change that.

"If we can get children properly restrained in car seats it can save a lot of lives," Undersheriff Sean Holmes of the Elkhart County Sheriff's Department said.

The Elkhart County Sheriff's Department with the Elkhart County Traffic Safety partnership were accompanied by Safe Kids Elkhart County and held a car seat inspection. Indiana law requires children from birth to age eight to ride in child restraints.

Cheryl Robinett was at the inspection on Saturday morning. She says she is always traveling with her grandchildren. "They're first. They come first," Robinett said as to the reason she had her car seats inspected. "Even though I have 13 grand kids, I learned something new today. That's a good thing."

The inspection not only made sure the car seats were safe and functioning, officers and seat technicians also trained people on how to properly install the seats. "When you get to see it in the box you don't know how to put it in right. I mean it tells you, but sometimes you don't get them tight," Robinett said.

Besides proper instruction, people were also informed of common misconceptions. These include believing a car seat is one-size-fits-all or not knowing they have expiration dates. A technician said car seat manufacturers expect their products to be used for 7-10 years.

All this information is meant to create a safer driving environment for children and ensures parents are compliant with the law. "Everybody thinks of enforcement as we're out there writing tickets, which we will be, but I would rather have it hard for us to find violations for child restraints. That would be just fine with me," Holmes said.

The Elkhart County Sheriff's Department will hold two more Child Seat Inspections this year. One will be held in August and the other in September. You can also contact your County Health Department to set up an appointment for an inspection.

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