(WHTM) — The Pennsylvania State Police is dedicated to child passenger safety. This is highlighted during National Child Passenger Safety Week, Sept. 19 through Sept. 25. During this week, drivers are encouraged to take advantage of free child safety events occurring throughout the state.
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At the free events, police officers certified as child passenger safety technicians are available to check child safety seats for suitability and instruct on and help with the proper installation of the seats. Technicians will also teach caregivers how to properly harness a child in a seat as well as check for recalls.
Through June of this year, state police technicians conducted 406 child safety seat inspections and found 239 cases of misuse. The COVID-19 pandemic impacted seat checks during 2020, but troopers still completed 850 checks and found more than 350 misuses by drivers. In 2019, over 1,600 checks were completed with more than 600 misuses.
Pennsylvania’s primary seat belt law requires all occupants younger than 18 to wear a seat belt when riding anywhere in a vehicle. Children under the age of two must be secured in a rear-facing child seat, and children under the age of four must be restrained in an approved car seat. Children must ride in a booster seat until their eighth birthday.
State police encourage parents and caregivers to take advantage of this free service. Visit the website by clicking here to find a free child seat event near you. If you can’t make it to one of the events this week, don’t worry! You can contact a state police station near you to set up an appointment.