By DOUGLAS W. MOTLEY
The child safety seat inspection and installation event held at the California Highway Patrol’s (CHP) Running Springs office on Saturday, Sept. 2, was somewhat of a washout due to the rain and extremely foggy weather throughout the entire mountaintop communities, which apparently discouraged the public from attending the yearly presentation.
According to CHP Officer Pedro Aguilar, only one couple showed up for the demonstration, which was scheduled for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Aguilar, who is a specially trained child car seat technician, received his National Highway Traffic Safety Administration certification at the Ben Clark Sheriff’s Department and CHP Training Center in Riverside.
Pointing out that most vehicles have seatbelt anchors on the floor behind the rear seats, Aguilar said that most front-facing rear seats can accommodate a child car seat that can securely restrain a child weighing up to 60 pounds.
Under current California law, children under 2 years of age must ride in a rear-facing car seat unless the child weighs 40 or more pounds or is 40 or more inches tall. Children under the age of 8 must be secured in a car seat or booster seat in the back seat. Children who are 8 years old or have reached a height of 4’9” may be secured by a booster seat but, at a minimum, must be secured by a safety belt.
Warning that children who are not securely restrained in a child safety seat are likely to receive serious or even fatal injuries, fellow CHP Officer Ubaldo Gonzalez told the Alpine Mountaineer, “If you have questions about child safety restraint systems or need assistance, please reach out to us by stopping by our office at 31230 Highway 18 in Running Springs or call us at (909) 867-2791. If you are seriously interested in protecting your child, we can provide you with a child safety seat at no cost and show you how to install it.”