St. John Valley

Workshop will focus on proper use of child car seats

MADAWASKA, Maine — Madawaska Ambulance Paramedic Jessica Pelletier and her husband local Police Lt. Jamie Pelletier will lead a “Car Seat Check” workshop on July 29, hosted by the Madawaska Public Safety Department.

“This is great opportunity for those with questions or concerns about their car seat installation or which car seats to use if you are a caregiver, parent, or parent to be,” Jessica Pelletier said.

The pair recently attended a four-day training session and are now certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians. The training program focused on the proper use of vehicle restraint systems and child car seat restraints.

“A majority of parents still misuse their child restraints and need help to get it right,” Jessica Pelletier said. “About 80 percent of car seats are installed incorrectly.”

The pair will discuss the proper way to use rear facing car seats, forward facing car seats, booster seats, belt positioning devices and use of a five-step seat belt fit test to determine when a child is ready to use just a seat belt.

“Caregivers and parents are recommended to bring their little ones with them the day of the check, so we can ensure proper seat selection,” Pelletier said.

A U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention study found that, in one year, more than 618,000 children, from newborn through age 12, rode in vehicles without the use of a child safety seat, booster seat or a seat belt at least some of the time. Of the children ages 12 years and younger who died in a car crash in 2015, 35 percent were not in an approved restraint device or system.

The car seat workshop will take place from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m, at the Madawaska Safety Complex. For more information, call the Madawaska Police Department at 728-6356. Additional information about child safety seats may be found at http://cert.safekids.org/.

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