GREAT FALLS — The Cascade City-County Health Department hosted a free car seat checkup event on Wednesday.
“September is ‘National Child Safety Passenger Month' and we’re holding a car seat checkup event where people can drive in, we’ll check their car seats, and make sure they are as safe as they can possibly be for their kids,” explained Mary Kay Burns, nurse and a child passenger safety technician instructor.
“I’ve been doing this for 20 years,” Burns said.
During Wednesday’s event, instructors checked for a number of things.
“We want to make sure that the harnesses are tight around the child. The car seat is installed tightly in the vehicle. We want to make sure that the child is facing the proper direction either forward or backwards. And we want to make sure that the child is in the correct car seat for their age and size,” Burns said.
Volunteers with the CCHD, Malmstrom Air Force Base, and Great Falls Emergency Services were on hand to check the car seats and give away a limited number of seats to those who needed a new one.
“I care about kids and making sure they are safe out there on the road,” Burns said.
Burns says it is extremely important for parents to check the car seats and to not feel ashamed to ask questions.
“Car crashes are the number one killer of kids from age 1 year to 4 years, and also teenagers. A good, safe car seat can protect your child a whole lot in really bad crashes,” Burns said. “Make sure everyone in the vehicle is buckled up.”
If you were unable to make Wednesday’s event, there are still ways to ensure safety.
You can call the Cascade City-County Health Department at 406-454-6950 to arrange for a car seat inspection and provide safety information.