CAMARILLO, Calif. – The Ventura County Fire Department has been awarded a $58,900, year-long grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety to expand the department’s Child Passenger Safety Program.
Together with Safe Kids Ventura County and Ventura County Public Health, the fire department works to provide child passenger safety awareness for car seat installation, and provide hands-on training to parents and caregivers.
According to Safe Kids Worldwide, 73 percent of car seats are not used or installed correctly. In the U.S., motor vehicle injuries are one of the leading causes of preventable deaths among children, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
With this additional grant funding, the fire department will be able to focus on reducing the number of unrestrained and improperly restrained children, drivers and passengers. This will be accomplished through more car seat inspection stations, extra hands-on trainings and the purchase of car seats to provide to low-income residents who complete a child safety-seat class.
“Installing a car seat is not a one-size, fits-all model. There are hundreds of different types on the market and each one is unique,” said Fire Chief Mark Lorenzen. “With this program, we hope to teach parents how to properly install car seats to keep their kids safe while driving on the road.”
This marks the first year the Office of Traffic Safety, with support from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, has awarded funding to the County for this program.