RALEIGH, NC (WNCN) — This week is Child Passenger Safety Week and a Monday event at Pullen Park will help parents and caregivers keep children in vehicles safe.
North Carolina Insurance Commissioner Mike Cousy and North Carolina Governor’s Highway Safety Program director Mark Eizell, along with local law enforcement agencies and first responders, will host the Child Passenger Safety Clinic from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Pullen Park in Raleigh.
This program is being organized to ensure that children are secured in properly installed child safety seats when they are in the vehicle.
At the clinic, nationally certified child safety seat technicians will inspect car seats free of charge to make sure children are in age-appropriate seats that are installed properly.
Families who cannot afford a child seat can come with their child to the clinic to get a free car seat, if necessary, and have it installed and inspected properly.
Free car seats will be limited to 50 seats and will be distributed on a first come, first served basis.
“Car seats save lives, but they have to be installed properly to do their job,” Cauzy said. “Our goal during Child Passenger Safety Week is to teach as many parents, grandparents and caregivers as possible how to install a child passenger safety seat and the correct way to secure children in a vehicle.”
According to the NC Department of Insurance (NCDOI), car accidents are the leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 13.
According to the US Department of Transportation, 608 children died in traffic accidents in 2019. Thirty-eight per cent of them (231) were not stopped in the child passenger safety seat.
Data shows that child safety seats reduce the risk of accidental deaths by 71 percent for infants and by 54 percent for toddlers.
“Last year, 30 children under the age of 12 died on the streets of North Carolina, and that’s unacceptable,” Ezel said. “We can and should prevent these tragedies. North Carolina has more child passenger safety technicians than any other state, and they are always available to help ensure you and your family have a proper installation.
According to the NCDOI, there are more than 2,900 child passenger safety technicians in North Carolina who work in 98 of the state’s 100 counties.
The event will take place in the Pullen Park parking lot near Shelter 5, located on the hill to the right of the upper parking lot, near the Aquatic Center. The address is 520 Ashe Avenue in Raleigh.
Click here to view the list For fire stations and other sites in North Carolina that may offer free car safety seat checks year-round.