General Safety: Car Seat Safety

Help Available Locally

Car Seat Graphic

Clark County Fire District 5 gets a lot of questions about car seat safety. In Vancouver and Clark County, the Clark County Child Passenger Safety Team conducts a car seat event on the third Saturday of each month at the Southwest Washington Medical Center. Hours are 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Mill Plain and 92nd Avenue location.

The Coalition is a network of individuals and agencies, including the Vancouver Police and Fire Departments, who work together to support safe rides for children. The Vancouver Police Department has an especially nice page of information, and we encourage you to visit the links below where you can find answers to your questions.

The National highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends that all children under 13 ride in the back seat. Infants under 20 pounds should be in a rear-facing safety seat, toddlers 20-40 pounds should be in a forward-facing child seat and children weighing more than 40 pounds but less than 4 feet 9 inches tall should be in a booster seat that helps the belt fit correctly across the lap and chest.

The number of children killed in highway accidents last year (2001) was the lowest on record, when 2,658 children under 16 died, down 5.4 percent from the previous record low of 2,811 in 2000. Many states have passed tougher laws requiring children be belted or ride in safety seats. And several automakers have developed programs to educate parents about proper use of restraints.