Protecting Our Most Precious Cargo: Children

Buckling child into a car seat

If you currently use a car seat and want to ensure it is properly installed, visit safercar.gov for information.

By Jennifer Toth
Deputy Director for Transportation

Of all the cargo we transport, none is more valuable than children. Yet tragically, motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 13 years. These deaths, and thousands of serious injuries, can be prevented by properly using car seats, booster seats or seat belts.

In recognition of national Child Passenger Safety Week September 14-20, 2014, I want to remind everyone about properly using child safety seats and seat belts. Not only do they save lives, but child safety seats are required by Arizona law. Children younger than 8 years old and under 4' 9" must be properly secured in a safety or booster seat.

If you currently use a car seat and want to ensure it is properly installed, visit www.safercar.gov/parents/index.htm for information about car seat inspection locations in Arizona.

As children grow up, they need to understand the importance of always wearing a seat belt. One of the best ways to teach them is leading by example. This means always wearing YOUR seat belt and making sure all passengers are buckled up or properly secured in the appropriate car seat before you begin driving.

Sharing the Road with Trucks

September 14-20 is also National Truck Driver Appreciation Week. One of the best ways to show your appreciation during this week, and always, is by safely sharing the road with trucks. Here are a few tips, courtesy of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration:

  • Avoid blind spots, also referred to as “no zones,” around the front, back and sides of a truck. If you cannot see the truck driver in the mirror, the truck driver can’t see you.
  • Don’t cut in front of trucks. They need more time to stop compared to a passenger vehicle. Forcing a larger vehicle to stop suddenly can result in a serious crash.
  • Pass trucks safely! Look for the front of the truck in your rear-view mirror and make sure there is enough space between your vehicle and the truck before pulling in front.