A national program to give away one million car booster seats is being launched today along with the results of a survey on how few Iowa parents put their kids in them. Booster seats will be distributed to low-income families. The event is being held in partnership with The United Way. Sarah Kirkish is an automotive safety engineer at Ford. She says booster seats are a “transition” seat for kids between four and eight-years-old, up to around 80 pounds. She says kids should -not- go from an infant car seat to riding with a regular seat belt, just because booster seats aren’t required in most states. Kirkish says only three states have booster seat laws and Iowa is not among them. Kirkish says only about 20-percent of Iowans use booster seats though 85-percent of Iowa parents have heard of them. She says there are a few questions parents should ask themselves to determine if their child should be riding in a booster seat. Parents should make sure their child sits in the back of the seat, that the lap belt sits low on their thighs, and that the shoulder rests directly across their shoulder. Over the coming weeks, Ford will be working with the United Way of Iowa to identify low-income Iowa families who could qualify for the free seats.
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