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Child seat installation class offered

Staff reports

DAYTON — Through a state grant, the Central Lyon County Fire District along with the Nevada Office of Traffic Safety will offer a free clinic Feb. 8 to anyone interested in properly installing car seats for children.

“People think that their seats are in tight, but if you think of an impact at 60 mph, you’ll realize that seat has to be in there so tight it doesn’t move any different from the way the car does,” said Mary Ellen Holly, district fire prevention specialist.

“I’ve seen 180-pound men sitting on a (child) car seat to get it put in there as tight as it needs to be.”

Holly said during the clinic in the Smith’s parking lot on Highway 50 East from 1:30 to 4 p.m., firefighters will focus on three areas: determining if a car seat has been recalled, ensuring the seat used is appropriate for the child’s age and weight, and teaching adults the proper way to install the seat.

“The purpose is to make sure kids are safe,” Holly said.

If a seat is deemed unsafe, Holly said, replacements can purchased from Central Lyon County Fire District firefighters.

Children from low-income homes or those in the Women, Infants and Children program, will receive a car seat at no cost.

According to Nevada law, any child younger than 5 years of age and weighing less than 40 pounds is required to be in a safety seat.

In 2001, six children younger than the age of 9 were killed in accidents on Nevada highways.

“What we’ve discovered nationally is that 9 out of 10 child-safety seats are installed incorrectly,” said Traci Filippi, highway safety representative of the Office of Traffic Safety. “In Nevada 98 percent have been found to have been installed incorrectly. Parents need to know how to install these seats.”

IF YOU GO

What: Child-safety seat clinic

When: 1:30 to 4 p.m. Feb. 8

Where: Dayton Smith’s Food and Drug, 2200 Highway 50 East.

Cost: Free