CPS in the News

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Kids and Car Safety Applauds Passage of the INVEST in America Act Congratulations to Janette and Amber on this long awaited success!!! More than 88% of hot car deaths involve children who are age 3 years old and younger. Janette Fennell, President and Founder, Kids and Car Safety: “These are our most helpless, fragile, and innocent souls. It is unconscionable to allow another day to pass where we aren’t utilizing effective, available technological solutions to stop the devastation that hot car deaths and injuries impose on our families. The Hot Cars Act language incorporated in the INVEST in America Act must be enacted immediately to require detection and alert systems in new cars to stop these needless, preventable, and tragic deaths” just as the total number of childhood heat stroke is now up to 7 for 2021. https://www.noheatstroke.org/ – Kate Bernacki – Coordinator, VOSP & Kids’ Plates Program, CDPH


Watch Partners for Automated Vehicle Education (recorded on February 3) as they develop new vehicle technologies. They have an incredible opportunity to re-think mobility: how can they create a transportation system that works for people who are not well-served by current transportation options? Last fall, the U.S. Department of Transportation announced the Inclusive Design Challenge, which offered financial rewards to design innovative systems and features for autonomous vehicles that solve access barriers for people with physical, sensory, and cognitive disabilities. One of the ten semi-finalist teams is PAVE Member May Mobility and the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI), who proposed an AV shuttle with an independent wheelchair loading and passenger securement system. During their next PAVE virtual panel, representatives from May Mobility and UMTRI will discuss their proposal, as well as Kent Keyser from United Spinal, who will talk about the state of accessibility technology and important considerations as we move forward.

Kathy Klinich – Associate Director, University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute
Kent Keyser – Public Policy Fellow, United Spinal Association
Tara Lanigan – Head of Policy & Advocacy, May Mobility


An eight-year-old boy from Massachusetts is lucky to be alive after nearly being fatally strangled by a safety belt, leading safety experts to highlight the risks of a little-understood feature of U.S. vehicle belts.


Safety at Home during COVID-19 About 4.5 million children are injured in the home every year. Children are now spending an extended time at home due to the shelter-in-place ordinance. Parents must be more aware of household dangers as the most common items can injure or be fatal to children if left within reach. Decrease risk of injuries by checking every room, teaching safety, keeping dangerous items locked up at all times and using these simple tips to keep children safe at home during the pandemic. It seems as though every day we are dealing with something different. School plans, daycare policies and at-home work schedules are frequently shifting for many as the pandemic continues its control on our lives and schedules. Sadly, increased time at home for young children has caused a drastic increase in the percentage of hot car deaths of children getting into vehicles on their own. The average for these types of tragedies is 26% of all child hot car deaths and this year it has skyrocketed to 42%. Tips to make sure children cannot get into a parked car from KidsAndCars.org.


Warning: Fake and Unsafe Products
Many fake and unsafe products are being sold, especially online. These products put children’s lives at risk because they are not safe to use in a crash.

Car crashes produce huge forces. A 30-mile-per-hour crash creates the same amount of force as a fall from a 3-story building. Safety seats and booster seats are carefully designed to protect children from this force. They meet all federal safety standards, including crash protection, flammability, and labeling.

CNN covered this astonishing trend in December, posting a side by side crash test of a fake and actual car seat to demonstrate their concerns.

English flyer Spanish flyer

A concerned grandmother, who was looking for safety seats for visiting grandchildren from ages 1 to 6 reached out to our Safe Ride Helpline. She led us to Carorld where we found unsafe “safety harnesses” for sale at $26!! We reported this danger to the federal government. The U.S. Dept. of Commerce has put a response in motion. Meanwhile, here is their post to complement our flyers, available from Helpful Handouts (link). Be careful; fakes and counterfeits are taking in the unwary. We are here to help!! Report fakes!!

Another Web site is showing the same products that do not meet U.S. crash standards for safety seats. They state the products are for ages 3-12. But now, they state that the products do NOT meet U.S. standards. We believe that they are afraid of U.S. government action; however, there is no reason to believe that these products meet the safety standards of any country. We believe this note shows that we have them on the run! Support the campaign; avoid any site with fake seats, products that do not meet safety standards, or that offer “products meeting U.S. safety standards at very low prices. All of them will cheat your child of safety! Report to NHTSA and the U.S. Dept of Commerce.



Should Adults Use Add-Ons to Adjust Safety Belt Positioning?  There are products on the market which claim to improve belt fit for pregnant women. With data from a study using pictograms, researchers found that only 3.5% of North American women were wearing their safety belts correctly during pregnancy. We want to share the response we received with its picture of a real crash-test dummy.



Update on “Killer Car Seats” – 11/7/19  Groupon advertised a half-price special on “U.S.A.-made car seats,” but it was the same fabric products that generated “killer car seat” headlines in February. This time Child Passenger Safety Technicians bombarded Groupon; the ad disappeared. And one of these products arrived at a safety seat checkup in California!! Download the flyer with a photo of a side-impact crash test of a similar product and share it.


‘Killer car seats’ sold online for £8 Children’s car seats, dubbed “killers” by trading standards officers, have repeatedly appeared for sale on online marketplaces, Which? has warned. The consumer group said the fabric seats, which can cost as little as £8, offered almost no protection in a crash and were illegal to use in the UK. The online sites – Amazon, eBay and AliExpress – all said they had removed the seats from sale. But Which? said the listings should have been deleted quicker.



The Child Passenger Safety Movement in the United States: This document was originally prepared as a background paper for The Bridgespan Group in 9/2016 by Stephanie Tombrello, Deborah Stewart, Denise Donaldson, and Joe Colella. This version has been edited and enhanced by Stephanie Tombrello and Deborah Stewart and published by SafetyBeltSafe U.S.A., 9/2017.


See how child passenger safety fits into the Harvard Business Review article on how donors should assess programs and conversely, how advocates can design booster law campaigns & funding requests. http://www.bridgespan.org/car-seats https://www.bridgespan.org/audacious-philanthropy-download


Proper Top-Tether Installation Helps Keep Kids Safer in Child Car Seats This simple step provides significant safety benefits. Consumer Reports’ own car-seat crash testing shows that top-tether use can significantly reduce the forward movement of a child in a frontal crash, thereby reducing a child’s risk for injury, especially to the head.