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Matt Boster

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Posted by: Matt Boster
Date: Aug 01 2018 1:59 PM

TALLAHASSEE, Fla.  This month, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) is reminding motorists to focus on child safety on and around Florida roads and ensure all children are correctly buckled into a vehicle, every time. DHSMV is partnering with the Florida Department of Children and Families, Florida Department of Education, Florida Police Chiefs Association, Florida Sheriffs Association, and the Florida Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (FCAAP) to recognize August 2018 as Child Safety Awareness Month.


“From properly buckling a child into a vehicle, to making sure they safely arrive at their destination, motorists are reminded to keep child safety in mind at every turn,” said DHSMV Executive Director Terry L. Rhodes. “DHSMV is committed to serving as a resource for parents, guardians, children and all motorists to increase everyone’s child safety awareness. This August, as children head back to school, we urge all Floridians to join us in protecting our most precious cargo.”


DHSMV’s Division of the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) offers free car seat installation and safety checks at major FHP troop stations throughout the state. Parents and guardians can call any local FHP office to schedule an appointment with a certified car seat technician.


“It is critically important to ensure the safety of our children in vehicles as they travel our state’s roadways. That means properly restraining children in a vehicle, every time,” said Colonel Gene S. Spaulding, Director of the Florida Highway Patrol. “FHP encourages everyone in the vehicle to buckle up, including passengers in the back seat. Remember, it’s your responsibility to ensure they are safe.”


Almost 50 percent of child passengers that died in a crash were not wearing any type of restraint in 2017. Preliminarily in 2017, there were 132,366 crashes in Florida involving children under the age of 18, resulting in 1,681 serious bodily injuries and 134 fatalities. Crashes involving children have gone up 14 percent since 2014. Drivers will also be charged with a seat belt violation if any passenger under the age of 18 is not restrained with a seat belt or child restraint device. There were 8,574 citations given for no or improper child restraint device.


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