Hawaii DOT and Partners Help Drivers Keep Keiki SafePosted on Sep 16, 2014 in Highways News, Main, News
HONOLULU – The Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) launched Child Passenger Safety Week on Monday, September 15, with a clear message: Let’s protect our keiki.
During a news conference at the Hawaii State Capitol, Lieutenant Governor Shan Tsutsui was joined by members of the HDOT, the county police departments, the departments of Health and Education and child passenger safety advocates to reaffirm their commitment to keeping our most vulnerable passengers – our keiki – safe while riding on our roadways. “It’s our job to protect our keiki,” Lieutenant Governor Tsutsui said. “They rely on us, so select the child passenger restraint that best fits your child and your vehicle. Also, remember to get your car seats checked to ensure they’re properly installed, and definitely make sure your keiki are buckled in the right way.”
During Child Passenger Safety Week (September 14-20) and throughout the year, Hawaii’s child passenger safety technicians are dedicated to helping parents and caregivers learn how to correctly install child safety seats and properly buckle up keiki, whether it’s in car seats, booster seats or using the vehicle’s seat belts.
“Every 34 seconds in the United States, a child under the age of 13 is involved in a crash,” Hawaii Department of Transportation Interim Director Ford Fuchigami said. “Using age- and size-appropriate child restraints is the best way to keep your child safe. We want to caution parents and caregivers not to move their children too quickly out of child safety seats and booster seats.”
Hawaii’s Child Passenger Restraint Law requires children less than four years of age to ride in a child safety seat. Children four through seven years old must ride in a child passenger restraint or booster seat. Violators are required to appear in court. If convicted, violators are required to attend a four-hour class and may be assessed a penalty of $100-$500.
However, just because a child has reached the age of seven doesn’t necessarily mean that he or she is ready to move out of a booster seat. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), about 24 percent of children ages four through seven were prematurely moved to seat belts, and nine percent were unrestrained altogether.
Parents and caregivers can get their seats checked this weekend at free events in all four counties, as part of “National Seat Check Saturday.” The inspections are conducted by certified child passenger safety technicians who have been trained to provide instruction on how to choose the right car seats, how to install them and how to use them correctly. Hawaii has more than 150 certified technicians from all walks of life, including firefighters, law enforcement officers, medical professionals and parents – all with the same passion and goal, keeping our keiki as safe as possible while riding on our roadways.
National Seat Check Saturday is being held on September 20 at the following locations and times:
Waipio Shopping Center, Waipahu
10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Maui Marketplace, Kahului
10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Central Fire Station, Pahoa Fire Station, Waikoloa Fire Station, Waimea Fire Station, Pahala Fire Station, Kailua Fire Station
10 a.m. to noon
All parents and caregivers are invited to attend these free events. Child Passenger Safety Week is sponsored by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. For more information on child car safety, as well as how to find other car seat check events, visit the Keiki Injury Prevention Coalition (KIPC) Hawaii website at www.kipchawaii.org or www.safercar.gov/parents.
Lieutenant Governor, Shan Tsutsui and DOT Interim Director, Ford Fuchigami gather to promote child passenger safety week to help protect the keiki of Hawaii