Car Seat Safety Check

Date: June 6, 2018

Start Time: 3 pm

End Time: 6 pm

Southington Library - Far parking lot
255 Main Street

City: Southington

The Early Childhood Collaborative of Southington (ECCS) and the Southington Police Department will be hosting a free car seat safety check on Wednesday, June 6, 2018 from 3 pm to 6 pm in the far parking lot of the Southington Public Library. The rain date is Thursday, June 7th and a change in date will be announced on the ECCS website and social media pages.

The Southington Police Department has several certified child passenger safety seat officers to perform the checks which will occur on a first-come, first served basis. The ECCS will distribute numbered tickets and provide refreshments for drivers and children while they are waiting.

The technicians will check the car seat to see if it’s expired or recalled. Then they will measure the height and weight of the child (or ask drivers for this information) to make sure the seat properly fits the child. If necessary, they will adjust harness straps to fit the child before the installation occurs. Then, they will install the seat making sure to teach and answer questions as they install. The technicians may even walk the adults through installing the seat themselves, to ensure they know how to install the seat safely for the child. Educational materials will also be available.

As this is an educational event, any installation or usage issues identified during the car seat safety check will be corrected and the police will not be issuing tickets for car seat violations.

“Connecticut’s new car seat safety regulations have updated weight and age requirements and impact all children under the age of eight,” said Joanne Kelleher, director of the Early Childhood Collaborative of Southington. “Parents and grandparents tell me that they struggle with car seat installation and getting their child to fit comfortably so this is an opportunity to have a trained expert help them.”

The new regulations, effective October 1, 2017 under Connecticut Legislature’s Public Act 17-230, list an age and weight, the child must meet both requirements.

  • Infants must remain rear-facing until they are a minimum of 2 years old AND 30 pounds. This is an increase of 1 year and 10 pounds. Rear-facing car seats are not allowed in the front passenger seat with an operable airbag.
  • Toddlers can ride either rear-facing or forward-facing in a child restraint system equipped with a five-point harness until 5 years AND 40 pounds.
  • Children between 5 and 8 years old AND between 40 and 60 pounds can ride a in booster seat secured by a seat safety belt, forward-facing in a child restraint system equipped with a five-point harness, or rear-facing. Under the previous law this section referred to children 6 and under.
  • Children who are at least 8 years old and 60 pounds, tweens and teens must be in a seat belt whenever they ride in a vehicle. It is further recommended that children should ride in the back seat until they are 13 years old.

All people and objects should be properly restrained whenever they are in a vehicle. Loose cargo in your SUV can be especially dangerous if a child is in a rear facing seat.

This event is part of the ECCS’s Southington Community Well-Being Grant Initiative funded by the Bradley Henry Barnes & Leila Upson Barnes Memorial Trust at the Main Street Community Foundation.