It's a Fact:
Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for the age group 2 to 14 years old (based on 2004 figures, which are the latest mortality data currently available from the National Center for Health Statistics).
Every day in the United States, an average of 5 children age 14 and younger were killed and 568 were injured in motor vehicle crashes during 2006.
Research has shown that lap/shoulder seat belts, when used, reduce the risk of fatal injury to front seat occupants (age 5 and older) of passenger cars by 45 percent and the risk of moderate-to-critical injury by 50 percent.
During 2006, 6,983 passenger vehicle occupants age 14 and younger were involved in fatal crashes. For those children where restraint was known, 25 percent were unrestrained; among those who were fatally injured, 45 percent were unrestrained.
Research on the effectiveness of child safety seats has found them to reduce fatal injury by 71 percent for infants (less than 1 year old) and by 54 percent for toddlers (1-4 years old) in passenger cars.
Booster seats are designed to raise children up so that the safety belt fits correctly – the shoulder belt should cross the child’s chest and rest snugly on the shoulder, and the lap belt should rest low across the pelvis or hip area.
Among children under age 5, an estimated 425 lives were saved in 2006 by child restraint use.
Source: National Center for Statistics and Analysis
Child Passenger Safety 101: The Basics
Where to Check Your Child's Safety Seat
NADA's Commitment to Child Passenger Safety
Frequently Asked Questions
A Parent's Guide to Buying and Using Booster Seats*
Child Passenger Safety – A Parent's Primer*
*PDF brochures require free Adobe Acrobat Reader.