Mom Shelly Martin has had to go through the unthinkable after her daughter was in a car accident.
Her daughter Samantha, who was wearing a seat belt when her father crashed into a tree, had her stomach essentially split in two by the lap band.
NBC 12 quotes Martin, “They told me she had facial and head injuries and stomach lacerations and that she was still in surgery and that’s all they would tell me for a couple of hours.”
Samantha spent almost three weeks in the hospital recovering.
Now that her daughter is home and recovering, Martin wants to make sure other parents know that these injuries were preventable.
The first thing parents should know, Martin says, is that booster seats should be used until kids are at least four feet and nine inches tall.
Kids are usually between 10 and 12 when they reach this height. The booster seat places the seat belt in the correct position so that in the event of an accident it can restrain the child without causing serious injury.
Seat belt shoulder straps should never be placed behind the child or crossed anywhere except the shoulder.
This little lady is just playing around while the car is parked, but it’s still important to know and pay attention to the ways kids put on their seat belts. If the strap is behind them, it may put extra pressure on the lap band in the event of a crash. If it’s criss-crossed or pulled down in the front, the belt can cause injuries to other parts of the body.
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The biggest thing to remember is to check car seat manuals. Even if a child appears to be big enough to ride without a harness or a booster seat, they may not be. Height, weight, and age all factor in to which seat is appropriate.
Help your kids stay safe on the road and prevent unnecessary injuries by instilling good seat belt habits early. They’ll be driving on their own soon enough!
(via The Car Seat Lady / NBC 12)