Good drivers know that using a safety belt can save a life in the event of an accident, but a new study has found an alarmingly high rate of people who don't know how to properly protect their child passengers with proper use of booster seats.
The researchers at Indiana University School of Medicine found that two-thirds of the booster seats observed in a study conducted throughout Indiana were not being used appropriately.
Researchers said they found major misuses in the transport of 65 percent of the children including a slack shoulder belt or placement of the shoulder belt behind the child's back, under an arm, or over an arm rest.
"Our findings clearly show that booster seats are not protecting children because of user error," said Joseph O'Neil, the first author of the new study.
Children of any age who have outgrown child car seats need a booster seat until their knees extend over the seat at a 90 degree angle and -- ideally -- their feet touch the floor, O'Neil said.
He urges parents to have all children under age 13 ride in the back seat to minimize their exposure to front impact collisions and powerful airbags.
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