"When it comes to car crashes, there are no second chances. EVERY passenger must be buckled up; in a car seat or in a booster seat EVERY RIDE in order to have a fighting chance to survive in a crash."
Child Passenger Safety Advocate and Madison's Mom
The need for public education about the proper use of booster seats has never been greater. Car crashes are the leading cause of death for children, and young children who ride using seat belts rather than booster seats are 59% more likely to suffer devastating injuries, including severe damage to the brain, liver, spleen, and spinal cord, in a crash. According to the NHTSA’s National Survey on the Use of Booster Seats, only a small percentage of children use the proper safety restraints in cars, and many do not ride in the back seat as required by law. These findings are a major cause for public concern, and the reason behind the firm’s public service initiative.
The firm's campaign features Atlanta mom, Jenny Harty, and her teenage daughter, Madison, in a series of :30 public service TV announcements, outdoor billboards and news interviews covering the true story of how Madison's life was miraculously spared after a catastrophic accident when she was just five years old. Doctors, police and emergency workers all credited the $20 booster seat that Madison was riding in as saving her life. Tireless campaigning by Jenny Harty in the months and years following the accident, resulted in the passing of stronger child passenger safety legislation in 2004, also known as "Madison's Law".
Effective July 1st, 2011 children under age eight are required by law to be in a child safety seat or booster seat appropriate for their height and weight, and used according to the manufacturer's instructions. The law also requires children under eight to ride in the rear seat.
For more information on the new booster seat law, including exemptions, exceptions, fines and citations, please visit the Georgia Highway Safety Organization.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that 65 children under 10 die every year on Georgia highways because they are not properly secured in child restraint seats or booster seats. You can help protect your child from injury or death by taking the 5-Step Test offered by SafetyBeltSafe U.S.A., posted below. These steps will help you determine if your child is ready for seat belts alone, or if he/she should continue to ride in a booster seat.
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Montlick & Associates has a long history of giving back to the community, not only in terms of free legal advice to accident victims, but also through our ongoing public service initiatives including our Child Passenger Safety Program.
HelpKeepKidsSafe.org has tons of information to help you become more knowledgeable about safety and prevent injuries to children. Have fun exploring! Montlick & Associates hopes that you and your family will always be safe!