Keeping kids safe: Commissioner Causey kicks off Child Passenger Safety Week with FREE car seats for families

Insurance Commissioner Mike Causey is joining Safe Kids Pitt County Director Ellen Walston and North Carolina Governor’s Highway Safety Program Director Mark Ezzell to help save children’s lives by making sure families use a properly installed child safety seat in their vehicles.

To kick off Child Passenger Safety Week, which runs Sept. 17-23, families and media are invited to a Child Passenger Safety Clinic on Monday, Sept. 18, at the Kohl’s parking lot in Greenville to show how properly installed child restraints can greatly improve the safety of a child.

“Child deaths and injuries can be prevented by using the right car safety seat correctly,” said Commissioner Causey. “Our goal during Child Passenger Safety Week is to teach parents, grandparents and caregivers the correct way to install a child passenger safety seat to make sure all children are safely secure in the vehicle.” 

Car crashes are the leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 13 years old.

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 710 children were killed in passenger vehicles in 2021, and more than 100,000 were injured. More than a third (36%) of the children who died were unrestrained.

Child safety seats reduce the risk of fatal injury by 71% for infants and by 54% for toddlers.

A child’s age, weight and height can all play a factor when determining proper safety harnesses, so it’s important to stay informed with all current regulations and suggestions. 

“The N.C. Governor’s Highway Safety Program and the N.C. Department of Insurance have worked together for almost 30 years to make our roads safer for children,” said Ezzell, director of the N.C. Governor’s Highway Safety Program, which funds efforts to reduce traffic crashes in North Carolina. “Along with many local and state partners, including the UNC Highway Safety Research Center, we provide training and resources to parents and caregivers, and these efforts have been effective since North Carolina now has one of the strongest child passenger safety programs in the nation.”

At Monday’s event, National Certified Child Safety Seat Technicians will inspect car seats free of charge to make sure children are in age-appropriate seats that are properly installed.

Families who cannot afford a child seat can come to the clinic with their child to receive a free car seat if needed and have it installed/inspected.

Child safety seats will be limited to 50 seats for this event and will be distributed on a first come, first served basis.  

Below are the details for the Child Passenger Safety Week Kick-Off Event:

Insurance Commissioner Mike Causey joins N.C. Governor’s Highway Safety Program Director Mark Ezzell and Safe Kids Pitt County Director Ellen Walston, who serves as the Injury Prevention Coordinator at the Eastern Carolina Injury Prevention Program (ECIPP) at ECU Health Medical Center.

Child Passenger Safety Week Kick-Off Clinic

3501 Galleria Dr.
Greenville, N.C. 27834

Monday, September 18th from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. 

To prevent injuries and deaths to children because they were not properly buckled up.

There are approximately 3,000 Child Passenger Safety Technicians operating across all 100 counties in North Carolina. 

To view a list of fire stations and other sites in North Carolina that can provide FREE car safety seat checks year-round, visit: 

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Angela Brown
Angela Brown is the author of our Business & Economy section.