Parents commonly make mistakes when installing car seats: study
San Diego – The vast majority of parents in a recent study made at least one critical error when installing or handling car seats for their infants, according to research presented Oct. 13 at the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference & Exhibition.
During the study, conducted by the Oregon Health and Science University Hospital in Portland, car seat safety technicians observed 267 families as they either installed the seat or positioned their infant in the seat when leaving the hospital. Ninety-three percent of parents made at least one mistake, which the technician explained and helped to correct before the families drove home.
The most common positioning errors included:
- Harness too loose (69 percent)
- Retainer clip too low (34 percent)
- Use of after-market product not approved with seat (20 percent)
- Harness too high (18 percent)
- Caregiver did not know how to adjust harness (15 percent)
The most common installation errors included:
- Seat installed too loosely (43 percent)
- Incorrect angle of seat (36 percent)
- Safety belt used but not locked (23 percent)
- Incorrect spacing between car seat and vehicle front seat (17 percent)
The research was presented Oct. 13 at the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference & Exhibition in San Diego.