Police Offering Free Car Seat Inspections

The Wheeling Police Department invites parents and caregivers within the region to a car seat safety check today.

The event will begin at 2 p.m. outside the City-County Building at 1500 Chapline St.

Those who attend will be taught not only how to buckle their child into a car seat properly, but will have visual aids to assist them in learning.

The car seat inspections are free to the public, and the program is part of the Governor’s Highway Safety Program’s Child Passenger Safety Initiative. The program was put in place to reduce instances of improperly installed car seats putting children’s lives at risk while on the road.

“It is National Seat Check Saturday, which is why we are providing the public this service,” said Melissa Taylor, regional coordinator for the Governor’s Highway Safety Program. “We will be teaming up with the Wheeling Police Department and local car seat technicians for the event.”

The certified technicians are local volunteers, according to Taylor. Issues that occur when car seats are not properly used include retainer clips that are placed too low, use of an incorrect harness slot and harnesses that are adjusted too loosely.

Kaitlyn Scott of Wheeling, mother of 9-month-old Kaeghan Tustin, said she is pleased the police department is looking out for local families.

“I think it’s great because people are so uneducated about car seat safety,” she said.

West Virginia law requires every child under the age of 8 to be secured properly in a federally approved car seat when traveling. But according to the police department, four out of five people use car seats improperly.

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