The Regional Municipality of Durham

News Release

Parents are reminded to ensure children's car seats are used correctly this National Child Passenger Safety Week

WHITBY, ON September 16, 2016 - Durham Region Health Department is observing National Child Passenger Safety Week, September 18 to 24, by reminding parents and caregivers about the importance of keeping your child in a car seat until they are at least 4 ft. 9 in. tall.

According to Transport Canada, 19 children 12-years old and under are injured or killed every day in motor vehicle collisions; this number represents the equivalent of an elementary school class. Parents can reduce children’s risk for injury by choosing the correct stage of car seat and by adhering to the maximal height and weight restrictions provided for the car seat. Car seats should also be installed correctly based on the manufacturers’ instructions and children should be secured properly when placed in a car seat.

Car seat legislation was first introduced in 2005 in Ontario. “Although many improvements have been made to vehicles since the introduction of the legislation, the legislation is only a minimum requirement,” explained Nicole Goodfellow, a public health nurse with the Health Department. Most seat belts are not designed to fit a child correctly until the child is approximately 4 ft. 9 in. tall. Also, in the event of a collision, poorly fitting seat belts can cause serious cervical and lumbar spinal cord injury, as well as intra-abdominal injuries, more commonly known as “seat belt syndrome.

“It’s safer to keep your child in a booster seat until they reach 4 ft. 9 in. tall,” added Ms. Goodfellow. “Some booster seats on the market today have an upper height limit of 5 ft. 3 in. tall, making it very easy for parents to keep their child in a booster seat for as long as possible.”

For more information on car seat safety, correct installation and use of car seats, visit or call Durham Health Connection Line at 1-800-841-2729 or 905-666-6241.

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Media inquiries:

The Regional Municipality of Durham:
Glendene Collins - Health Department, 905-668-7711 ext. 2999, or

If this information is required in an accessible format, please contact the Accessibility Co-ordinator at 1-800-372-1102 extension 2009.

For more information, please contact Health Department.