Parents lax about carpooling booster seats

January 30, 2012 12:00 AM

By now, most parents are aware of the safety benefits of booster seats in for small children, and many states have laws on the books that require their usage. While most parents do a good job of strapping their kids in while riding in their own vehicle, a recent study by the University of Michigan's C.S. Mott Children's Hospital found that parents get lax when it comes to carpooling.

Approximately 70 percent of parents carpool with other families, but many do not take the step of bringing their child's safety seat with them. Just 30 percent of those that carpool say they still require their child to ride in a booster seat while in a stranger's vehicle. In addition, 45 percent allow their own child to ride normally when a friend's kid is doing the same.

"The majority of parents reported that their children between the ages of four and eight use a safety seat when riding in the family care," said Michelle Macy, a clinical lecturer of emergency medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School and a pediatrician herself. "However, it's alarming to know that close to 70 percent of parents carpool, and when they do, they're often failing to use life-saving booster seats."

Booster seats can improve safety, but it's all for naught if your car isn't in top condition. Regular auto maintenance can find problematic car repairs before they endanger the occupants of a vehicle.

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