September 19, 2006

B.C. government and BCAA partner in booster seat campaign

Burnaby, British Columbia – The British Columbia Automobile Association (BCAA) Traffic Safety Foundation (TSF) has announced a new partnership with the Ministry of Children and Family Development in the Boost BC public awareness campaign to increase booster seat use. The Child Passenger Safety Program has received $100,000 in provincial funding to further promote the importance of child passenger safety.

“The BCAA Traffic Safety Foundation appreciates the opportunity to work closely with the provincial government in this life-saving road safety program,” says Allan Lamb, TSF executive director. “Parents, of course, want their children to be safe, and this partnership and education program will help parents make the right and safe decision when transporting children.”

Each year, approximately 860 children aged four to eight are seriously injured or killed in traffic crashes each year in B.C. Standard vehicle seatbelt systems are generally not designed for children less than 145 cm and weighing less than 36 kg, which is, on average, children younger than nine years of age. Out-of-position lap belts can cause serious internal injuries; studies have shown that children restrained in seatbelts alone are three times more likely to be injured in a motor vehicle collision than children in age-appropriate restraints.

Booster seats reduce the risk of serious injury and death by up to 60 per cent, but currently in B.C., only 18 per cent of children four to eight years of age are properly restrained in passenger vehicles using a booster seat. The campaign objective is to make booster seats the norm for children four to eight years of age, by educating parents about the needs and benefits of the seats, and making children more accepting of their use.

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