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Most Vermonters Installing Car Seats Incorrectly

Motor vehicle injuries remain a leading cause of death for children in the United States.  In 2010 more than 1,200 children aged 14 and younger died as occupants in motor vehicle crashes while another 171,000 were injured.

At a recent roadside inspection in Rutland, police and certified car seat inspectors reported that of 83 car seats they checked out - only 2 were properly installed.

Chris Bell, with the Vermont Department of Health, said the most recent data in Vermont shows that there is an 84 percent misuse rate for child protective seats.

"What that means is not that 84 percent of people are not using car seats, but they’re not using them properly installed,” Bell said.

Experts say that can make a big difference in a child’s safety during an accident.

Bell said Vermont’s car seat compliance rate is a bit worse than the national average - something the state wants to change.  

The Health Department is working with the state’s Emergency Medical Technicians, law enforcement and other partners to check for and encourage safe usage of child car seats.