So you need to use the booster AND the seat belt?

Most parents are good about getting their kids to stay in car booster seats at least until state laws tell them they can do otherwise. But there’s no accounting for HOW they put the children in those seats.

Or for the common sense of photographers and other professionals on the set of car rental company photo shoots.

It’s great that an ad campaign on Alamo car rental buses is letting us know that the company can give us access to child safety seats (usually at a cost per day above the price of outright purchasing a seat from a store, that is). But then they advertise that convenience service for a kids’ safety device with this photo:

 

Why not make the seat belt extra comfy and loose? What harm could come of that?

Why not make the seat belt extra comfy and loose? What harm could come of that?

Whoa, there. That seat belt is looking might nice and comfortable. And unsafe. You’d think someone at the company might have noticed that this is not the best way to tout safety to American parents — reinforcing images of a highly ejectable child sitting lounging with a slack seat belt, ready for optimal toss-around.

He also looks like he’s on the younger side for sitting in a belted booster.

Yes, you could say I have a few issues with this stuff. It’s not rocket science, but 93 percent of parents bring home newborn infants either incorrectly strapped into car seats or in safety seats that were installed flat-out wrong, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.

And this photo campaign is reinforcing an image that says it’s all right to keep the belts loose, when all usage rules indicate that the strap needs to be pulled close to the body in order to work in a crash.

It seems we could use a little more guidance on this stuff, and clearer instructions all around. For everyone.

Sure, there are a lot of dumb Americans breeding, but the idea that a full 93 percent could be idiots is a little ungenerous.

The instructions in the manuals just aren’t sticking with the general public, and this needs to be fixed.

This is how the Graco booster manuals say to belt your kid.

This is how the Graco booster manuals say to belt your kid.

I have made my share of mistakes with safety seats over the last few years. What mistakes have you made? Have you noticed others putting kids in wrong? 

Comments: What do you think?

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