Program helps get car seats to kids

A number of kids are safer on the roads, thanks to a program administered by the Minnesota Department of Public Safety’s Office of Traffic Safety.

The program, which began in 1994, has provided 4,591 child car seats to low-income families over the past two years. Families who receive a car seat also receive a demonstration session from a trained child passenger safety technician.

When used correctly, child seats reduce the chance of death by 70 percent for infants younger than 1 year old and by 54 percent for kids ages 1-4. A belt-positioning booster with a lap-and-shoulder seat belt reduces a child’s risk of injury by 59 percent.

The program, working with local partners, distributes car seats at more than 100 locations across Minnesota. It’s paid for with fines from violations of child passenger safety seat laws.