National Child Passenger Safety Week set for Sept. 16 through 21 AAA Texas, Safe Kids Greater Houston, and Texas Children’s Hospital Partner to Bring Car Seat Awareness, Education

(Houston, TX) – Installing a child’s car seat correctly is no easy task. In fact, experts estimate that three out of four car seats are installed incorrectly.  Proper installation of a car seat provides children with the best protection in a crash.

This year, National Child Passenger Safety week is set for Sept. 16 through 21.

On Sat., Sept. 21, 2013, which is National Seat Check Saturday, AAA Texas, Safe Kids Greater Houston and Texas Children’s Hospital will be hosting a free community car seat check from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at Houston Community College West Loop Campus, located at 5601 West Loop South, Houston. The event is free, but space is limited.  Parents can call Safe Kids Greater Houston for more information at: 832-822-2277.  Additional events are scheduled to take place during Child Passenger Safety Week, Sept. 16 through 21, and a full schedule can be found on the Safe Kids Web site at:  www.safekidsgreaterhouston.org.

Making sure a child is in the proper restraint system, car seat or booster seat can help provide protection in the event of a car crash. Safe Kids Greater Houston, along with a coalition of community organizations, regularly hosts and staffs check-up stations around the community throughout the year, focusing on teaching parents how to install their child’s car seat or booster seat based on manufacturers’ instructions.

“At Texas Children's Hospital, we have seen thousands of children who are injured, killed or permanently disabled as the result of not being properly restrained during motor vehicle crashes. We educate parents about car seat safety and seat belt use in an effort to reduce the number of preventable injuries from happening to their children,” said Diana Martinez, Health Educator and Safe Kids Greater Houston Coordinator.

All children younger than 8 years old who are shorter than 4 feet, 9 inches in height must be properly secured in a car seat or booster seat. Children not restrained at all or restrained in a system that does not fit their body can sustain serious head, neck and spinal injuries in a crash.

“As an advocate for the motoring public, AAA Texas works closely with legislators, health professionals and law enforcement to provide awareness and education in the community on the importance of child passenger safety,” said AAA Texas Public Affairs Representative, Sarah Schimmer. “We appreciate the opportunity to partner with Safe Kids Greater Houston and Texas Children’s Hospital to serve this community.”

To find information about additional car seat check events taking place in the Greater Houston area during Child Passenger Safety Week, Sept. 16 through 21, or to schedule an appointment at one of the community locations that provides assistance throughout the year, please check the Safe Kids Greater Houston Web site at: www.safekidsgreaterhouston.org or call 832-822-2277.

About AAA Texas

As North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA provides more than 53 million members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1902, the not-for-profit, fully tax-paying AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. AAA Texas can be visited on the Internet at www.AAA.com. Follow AAA Texas on Twitter:

@AAATexas and Facebook: www.facebook.com/AAATexas.

About Texas Children’s Hospital

Texas Children’s Hospital, a not-for-profit organization, is committed to creating a community of healthy children through excellence in patient care, education and research. Consistently ranked among the top children’s hospitals in the nation, Texas Children’s has recognized Centers of Excellence in multiple  pediatric subspecialties including the Cancer and Heart Centers, and operates the largest primary pediatric care network in the country. Texas Children's has completed a $1.5 billion expansion, which includes the  Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute; Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women, a comprehensive obstetrics/gynecology facility focusing on high-risk births; and Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus, a community hospital in suburban West Houston. For more information on Texas Children's, go to www.texaschildrens.org. Get the latest news from Texas Children’s by visiting the online newsroom and on Twitter at twitter.com/texaschildrens.

About Safe Kids Greater Houston

Safe Kids Greater Houston, led by Texas Children’s Hospital was established in 1998 to work on a local level at preventing unintentional child injuries and deaths. Safe Kids Greater Houston is one of more than 600 coalitions in the United States under the direction of Safe Kids Worldwide. Safe Kids Worldwide was founded by the Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C. to prevent the number one killer of children ages 14 and under: unintentional injuries. Since the inception of Safe Kids Worldwide in 1987, the unintentional childhood injury death rate has declined 45 percent. The goal of the Safe Kids Greater Houston Coalition is to address major areas of unintentional injuries to children 14 and under in our local area. This is accomplished by raising awareness among adults and children, providing life saving education and resources, and by making childhood injury a public priority. At the heart of Safe Kids Greater Houston are our many valuable local partners that work to make the Greater Houston area safer for children. We encourage you to get involved so we can ensure that all children in the Greater Houston area have the chance to grow up healthy and safe, and do all the great things kids were meant to do.