Parents, caregivers and anyone else responsible for transporting children will learn how to save those most precious to them as part of a program through TxDOT, local law enforcement and area medical officials.

As part of a program through Texas KidSafe, TxDOT Save a Life and Baylor Scott and While Hillcrest Medical Center Waco, child safety seat technicians will assist parents, caregivers and anyone else who plans to travel with children in finding the right fit and location of child safety seats.

“We’ve worked with TxDOT for about 12 years now and with the police departments for the same amount of time,” said Keith Reed with KidSafe. “…This is child passenger safety week so we try and have one in Brownwood or the Brownwood area on this particular week every year.”

According to a press release issued by KidSafe, organizers wish to make sure all parents and caregivers are familiar with the procedures for properly securing all children in the right car seats (rear-facing car seat, forward-facing car seat, booster seat, or seat belt) for their ages and sizes. Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians will be on-hand to provide free education on how to use car seats, booster seats, and seat belts for children. Technicians can also help educate caregivers about choosing the right car seat for their child, the importance of registering car seats with the manufacturer, and what to expect should that seat be subject to a safety recall.                                                  

“Only about 1 percent of people have everything perfect and the way it should be,” Reed said. “We don’t have a police officer in the area that is a certified technician so they’re there to help support the families and answer any questions they have.”

According to a recent study by the National Center for Health Statistics, motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for children 14 years old or younger. KidSafe estimated 98 percent of seats are improperly fitted and encourages everyone with children to have his or her child’s seat fitted even if they cannot be at Heartland Mall from 2 to 4 p.m.

“We have fitting stations monthly at the Texas Department of Transportation there in Brownwood,” Reed said. “They can make an appointment on the first Wednesday of every month to meet with a car seat technician and have their car seats checked out. It’s not just a once a year thing and we have other car seat check events throughout the year in Brownwood. Generally, we have about three or four.”