Isabella County Deadly Crash a Tragic Reminder of Car Seat Safety

The deadly crash in Isabella County is a stark reminder about properly securing children in car seats and wearing seat belts.

There is no guarantee the 3-year-old child would have survived the crash even if they were secured properly in a car seat.

But it’s a painful reminder about making sure they stay buckled in.

Car seats can be a challenge to install, but Lt. Travis House with the Michigan State Police says getting them locked into your car properly is the first vital step.

“The very youngest, the newborns, or up to one year old roughly, are typically in a rear facing car seat, and again it’s very important to look at the instructions and the weight ratings on a car seat will help to guide you as to how the child should be properly placed in the seat,” said House.

He says children can still find a way to wiggle out, which is what deputies believe could have happened in Isabella County.

“That is a problem parents sometimes have, is the child just refuse to get into their safety seat or fights them while they’re trying to get them buckled, or after they have them in, the child might try to remove those buckles and that’s something as a parent we have to figure how to make sure they stay in,” said House.

There are also officers trained to install car seats at most departments if parents have any questions.

“The last thing you should do is slap it together and assume it’s going to work. If it’s not properly installed it’s just not like not wearing your safety belt correctly,” said House.

Lt. House says to keep in mind the type of car seat a child needs changes with their age.