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Child Passenger Safety
Common Errors

Link to Spanish version.

Selection Errors

  • Child does not meet the weight and height requirements of safety seat.
  • Child is too small or too young for safety seat.
  • Safety seat is too old or the history of a safety seat is unknown.
  • Safety seat has been involved in a moderate to severe crash.
  • Safety seat is under current recall (check with your child safety seat manufacturer.

Harness Errors

  • Harness is not used.
  • Harness straps are too loose.
  • Harness straps are routed through the wrong slots or are secured incorrectly.
  • Harness straps are placed on the child incorrectly.
  • Harness straps are damaged or twisted.
  • Retainer clip (chest clip) is too low.

Installation Errors

  • Safety seat is facing the wrong direction (based on child’s age and weight).
  • Recline angle of the safety seat is incorrect.
  • Carrying handle of infant carrier positioned incorrectly while vehicle is in motion (refer to safety seat owner’s manual for correct position).
  • Safety seat should only be installed with safety belt OR lower anchors and tethers (LATCH), not both (unless specified by the car seat manufacturer).
  • Use of the wrong safety belt path.
  • Incorrect use of lower anchors and tethers.
  • Safety belt or lower anchors too loose or not locked securely (car seat should not move more than one inch at the seat belt path).
  • NEVER install a rear-facing child safety seat in front of an active airbag.

Use of After-Market Products

  • Use only product/accessories (padding, harness strap covers, toys hanging from the infant carrier handle, etc.) that come with your child’s safety seat or those that have been approved by the child safety seat manufacturer. Products that do not come with your child’s safety seat have not been crash tested with the seat and it is unknown if these items compromise the safety of your child in the event of a motor vehicle crash.
  • This also applies to the vehicle seat belt. Do not add covers, adjusters or tightening tools that are not approved by the vehicle manufacturer.

Resources

  • Injury Prevention Service (405) 271-3430 or Safe Kids (405) 271-5695

Injury Prevention Service, OSDH, 1000 NE 10th Street, Oklahoma City, OK 73117
Revised June 2011

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