Local law enforcement to hold 2nd annual Buckle Up, Baby event this weekend
Just days after bringing a child into the world, you strap them up and put them in a car seat for the journey home. Whether it is your first child or your fifth, making sure you are up-to-date and educated an proper car seat safety will be one of the first responsibilities you have to your newborn.
Each year thousands of young children are killed or injured in car accidents. According to the Center for Disease Control, more than 650 children ages 12 years and younger died as occupants in motor vehicle crashes, and more than 148,000 were injured in 2011.
The western North Carolina community has come together to help host Buckle Up, Baby!, a free car seat safety clinic, to help battle the alarming statistics.
The Macon County Sheriff's Department, along with the Franklin Police Department and Highlands Police Department have teamed up with Safe Kids of Jackson County to host the second annual Buckle Up, Baby! event to provide families in western North Carolina with the opportunity to get their car seat checked by certified car seat technicians.
The Buckle Up, Baby! event will be held at The Franklin Fun Factory on Sunday, April 26 from 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. Although the event is being held in Macon County, it is open to all families in western North Carolina.
Even though car seats are proven to be the most effective way to prevent serious automobile injuries, nearly 75 percent of all car seats are installed incorrectly. The certified technicians will help figure out if a seat is right for the child and right for the vehicle.
“This is the second year we have hosted this event and after last year, we realized more than ever how important car seat safety is,” said event organizer, Brittney Raby. "Last year, technicians checked 99 car seats and found that about 90 percent of the seats were installed incorrectly. We also had to replace 18 seats that were either outdated, broken, or had been recalled by the manufacturer."
Buckle Up, Baby! is not just for parents, but grandparents, aunts, uncles, caregivers. Anyone who transports children will have an opportunity to learn how to properly install a seat.
Just for attending the event, participants will be entered into a raffle for a chance to win prizes such as tickets to ride the Great Smoky Mountain Railroad, a $50 gas card, a brand new car seat, and gift certificates to local businesses.
Children will be treated to goodies like coloring books from Kaylor Insurance Agency, the local Nationwide Insurance agent, event stickers, and books from Read2Me. Macon Program for Progress will also be on hand providing information about their programs and enrollment.
For every child who attend the event, the Franklin Fun Factory will be providing a free $5 bonus free play card for children's to enjoy games inside the factory as well as other specials going on.
Using a car seat is the best protection you can give your child when traveling by car. Car seat use reduces the risk for death to infants (ages less than one year) by 71 percent; and to toddlers (ages 1 to 4 years) by 54 percent in passenger vehicles.
Every state in the United States requires that an infant or small child be restrained. Child safety seats can substantially reduce the risk of a potentially fatal injury, especially for babies but also for toddlers.
Buckle Up, Baby! will be held April 26 from 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Franklin Fun Factory. For more information, contact Brittney Raby at firstname.lastname@example.org or (828)508-3003.