Courtesy Trooper Matt McLaughlin, Nevada Highway Patrol
The Nevada Highway Patrol was awarded funding for Child Safety Seats, education and certification through our partnerships with the Nevada Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
The purpose of this funding is to certify and train Troopers as Child Safety Seat Technicians. As such, Troopers will be trained to install safety seats correctly and provide education to motorists about the correct use of child safety seats. The program also educates motorists on the installation of their own child safety seats.
The seats that were distributed this past week were specifically to the rural areas of Northern Nevada. Instances in which a Trooper may provide a new child safety seat to a motorist could be after a crash where a child safety seat is damaged or if a Trooper encounters a motorist who does not have or cannot afford a child safety seat. Too frequently, Troopers investigate crashes involving young children where the child is either not in a safety seat or is utilizing an incorrect seat for the child’s age or weight. Across the United States in 2014, 26 percent of children under 8 years old that were killed in vehicle crashes were inadequately restrained by an age appropriate device such as an infant seat, booster seat or seat belt.
The child restraint law here in Nevada is very specific. A child less than 6 years of age and weighing 60 pounds or less is required to be secured in a child restraint system while being transported in a motor vehicle. Many motorists believe that the law refers to either 6 years old or 60 pounds, which is not the case. Both requirements must be met before a child can ride in a motor vehicle without needing a child safety seat. The safest place for a child under the age of 13 is in the rear seat of a vehicle.
Our goal at the Nevada Highway Patrol is to have certified Child Safety Seat Technicians in every community across The Silver State. Safety for the motoring public is our #1 priority here at the Highway Patrol. Reaching “Zero Fatalities” on our highways is our main focus. This program can ensure that our children will stay safe and protected while traveling on Nevada’s highways.