SMH to hold child safety seat inspection

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NORWAY — The staff at the Family Birthplace is urging parents, caregivers and grandparents to make sure their child safety seats are properly installed on Saturday, Feb. 16, at the Norway Fire Department between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Technicians will be available to provide free hands-on seat inspections. It is not necessary to have the child present but if possible it is best to bring them. Child care will be available as needed.

“It’s the responsibility of every single parent, caregiver or anyone who transports children in their vehicle to make sure their passengers are safely restrained, every trip, every time,” said Carol Welsh, R.N., perinatal outreach coordinator for Stephens Memorial Hospitals Family Birthplace. “When it comes to the safety of a child there is no room for mistakes.”

Welsh said, “Car seats, when installed correctly and used, are extremely effective in saving children’s lives. Proper use of a car seat reduces the risk of death by as much as 71 percent for infants. However, car seats are complicated to install and use and there are many models to choose from. Even the most conscientious of parents may make mistakes. It has been found that nine out of 10 car seats are not installed or used correctly, and that only 5 percent of children who should use a booster seat actually do.”

Stephens Memorial Hospital is not only an inspection site but also is one of several distribution sites for car seats in the state of Maine. As a distribution site the hospital is authorized to provide car seats and boosters to families at no cost if they meet the state financial requirements. A WIC card needs to be shown as one of the qualifiers.

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For more information contact Carol Welsh at (207) 743-1562, ext. 6951.

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