Tag Archives: car seat installation

Car Seat Clinic at Blue Cocoon Boutique on March 7th

More than 3 out of 4 infant and child car seats are installed incorrectly, according to the NHTSA. In an accident–or even a quick stop–an improperly fastened seat may not protect the child.

Parents in the Cincinnati area can be more sure that their children are safe in their cars thanks to a free car seat clinic at Blue Cocoon Boutique at 9361 Montgomery Road on Saturday, March 7.

The clinic begins at noon and will feature individual car seat checks throughout the day by a technician from Baby Bodyguards. Space is limited, and registration is required. Schedule an appointment by visiting bluecocoonbaby.com and choosing “Class Registration” or calling Blue Cocoon at 513.791.1089.

The clinic is sponsored by Blue Cocoon and Baby Bodyguards of SW Ohio. For more information, visit bluecocoonbaby.com or babybodyguards.com.

Baby Bodyguards Comes to SW Ohio

Three out of four child car seats are not installed properly according to the NHTSA, making them less safe or even completely unsafe for children. In family homes cabinet latches, furniture straps, stair gates and other basic protective devices that are missing, misused, or improperly installed leave hazards for small children.It’s enough to keep new parents awake at night, and it’s the kind of problem that a new service in the Cincinnati area called Baby Bodyguards is designed to solve.

Baby Bodyguards began in New York after several accidents involving friends’ children led founders Fred and Courtney Ilarraza to study home safety. With the help of emergency room physicians, first responders, child psychologists, and other professionals, they started offering a comprehensive service to local families.

And now that service is available to families in southwest Ohio. “What appealed to us about Baby Bodyguards,” said co-owner Dylan Weidlich, “is that the professional installation of safety measures is almost secondary. What’s most important is to work with new parents and educate them about child safety.” Weidlich, a former EMT with a degree in neuroscience, stressed that the aim is for children to have normal experiences in a safe environment. “Kids need to explore, learn and grow. Parents don’t need to be overprotective as long as they understand how to deal with potential hazards around them.”

Weidlich said that his experiences as a safety consultant Prentice Women’s Hospital and Chicago’s Children’s Hospital and as a certified installer in Chicago and New York convinced him of the need for such a service in his home town. He also said he appreciates that the original Baby Bodyguards is a family business, and will continue to be as it expands to Ohio. “Families look out for each other,” he said.

Baby Bodyguards of SW Ohio offers professional car seat installation, infant and child CPR classes, and home safety evaluations and installations. In a typical home safety consultation, a member of the Baby Bodyguards team meets with parents to discuss a wide range of topics, from stove safety to identifying poisonous house plants. That’s followed by a home walk-through and installation of any needed safety devices.

On-the-spot car seat installations and in-home CPR classes are also available. In New York, said Weidlich, the CPR classes have become a chance for friends to gather. “Expectant mothers or families with infants will get together in a friend’s home and share the experience.”

Weidlich and the other members of the Baby Bodyguards team can be reached at 513-573-9390 or by emailing swohio@babybodyguards.com.

For more information visit www.babybodyguards.com.

Baby Bodyguards Works On Mitsubishi Project “First Ride”

We are really excited to be working with Mitsubishi on the “First Ride” event – a program that focuses on creating awareness and educating parents on child safety. We made sure the infant safety seat used for “First Ride” was properly installed.

When installing your safety seat for the first time, read the manual and make sure you mail in the product registration card to be alerted of any recalls.

Mitsubishi Motors’ “First Ride” event provides New York City newborns a safe, free ride home from hospital

Cypress, California, April 9, 2014 – Three New York City area infants will be making their inaugural ride home in one of America’s safest SUV/crossovers as part of Mitsubishi Motors’ “First Ride” event – a program that focuses on creating awareness and educating parents on child safety.

“Every day, thousands of newborns in New York City and around the nation leave hospitals in infant car seats andhead home for the first, most important time,” says Jessica Robinson, Engineer, Vehicle Verification and Testing at Mitsubishi Motors R&D of America, Inc. “However, most people don’t realize that 73 percent of all child safety seats are not installed or used properly1 nor do they consider the safety of the actual car driving them home.”

Instead of making the journey home through the streets of New York City in a taxi – an experience that does not legally require a car seat – the parents participating in Mitsubishi Motors’ “First Ride” event opted for a ride home from the hospital with their new bundles of joy in a fully-equipped 2014 Mitsubishi Outlander – an Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) highest-rated “Top Safety Pick+” vehicle piloted by professional drivers. Their touching personal stories have become a series of short web films that contrast the craziness of the streets of the big city, with the calm, precious moments shared betweenthree newborns and their parents.

Click here for #FirstRide — The Most Important Ride of All overview film

The all-new 2014 Mitsubishi Outlander was one of only four vehicles in the “Small SUV” category to receive the non-profit organization’s highest “Top Safety Pick+” designation in its crash testing evaluations. This was due to an exemplary performance in the various stringent crash testing criteria as well as the Outlander’s optional radar-based Forward Collision Mitigation (FCM)2  accident/impact reduction technology – a system that includes both audio and visual warnings to the driver as well as initiates automatic braking if necessary – and a requirement for a vehicle to receive the “plus” distinction from the IIHS for 2014 Top Safety Pick.

“When the all-new 2014 Mitsubishi Outlander was named an IIHS ‘Top Safety Pick+’ for the second year in a row, we were inspired to prove the benefits of riding in one of America’s safest crossover vehicles in a critically important way,” adds Robinson. “High vehicle safety ratings should be a priority – with or without children. And finally, a couple of extra minutes making sure you know how to properly install and use child safety seats could be a life saver.”

With a starting MSRP of only $22,995, the 7-passenger 2014 Mitsubishi Outlander comes with many innovative standard safety features:

– Hill Start Assist (HSA)

– 7 air bags including driver’s side knee air bag

– Active Stability Control (ASC) with Traction Control Logic (TCL)

– Patented Reinforced Impact Safety Evolution (RISE) energy-absorbing body/chassis safety cell technology

In addition to its included safety features, the all-new Mitsubishi Outlander is available with advanced high-tech safety systems including Lane Departure Warning (LDW), Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) and Forward Collision Mitigation (FCM)2.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Big Boy is Growing Up

Last week New York City Schools were closed for Mid-Winter Recess.  I had my children home with me while I attempted to keep working from our home office and keep my sanity.

I was thrilled when a mother in my 7 year old’s class offered to take my son to a movie. I spontaneously agreed and then my anxiety kicked in. You see, I have never allowed my son to be driven in a car that wasn’t operated by a member of my family and we have child safety seats for every stage.

I was shocked that when I voiced my concern to my friends with kids similarly aged, they thought  I was being nuts. Every one of them said that their kids ride in cars without booster seats.  They all have a seat in their vehicle, but they don’t think twice about their child being in other people’c cars without one. One friend even told me that she isn’t required to have a Booster Seat anymore because her daughter is 6.

The law in New York is that children need to be riding with a booster seat until they are 8. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends using a booster seat until a child is 4 feet 9 inches tall. The point of the booster is to raise a child up so the seat belt falls properly on their body so it can protect the if there is a crash.

I called the mother up and voiced my concern. She said that her kids don’t use a booster seat anymore, but she has room in her SUV if I want to put one in for my son.

My son went on his first real outing without me, and he had a great time. I on the other hand was counting the minutes till he got home. I couldn’t wait to hear all about his adventure.

photo-3

Not Happy With My New Harness to Booster Safety 1st Seat

I usually only write about products I like and stay away from negative reviews, but after my recent finger numbing experience trying to install our 3.5 year olds new Safety 1st Summit Deluxe Booster Seat into my mother’s 2014 Honda CRV, I want to scream out of frustration. I purchased the seat after reading dozens of positive reviews on Amazon.com. What I never gave thought to was the fact that most seats are installed incorrectly. Just because people rave about how easy it is to install, does not mean it is installed right.
I wanted a moderately priced harness to booster seat for the SUV, because our daughter is hardly even in it. In my own car I have the Britax Pioneer 70 and LOVE…. it!!!! When the snow fell and we needed to take a family trip to Lowes, I attempted to install the seat. A nice feature is you don’t have to thread the shoulder straps to get them in the right position, but you do have to uninstall the seat to lift a bar up in the back to make sure the straps were right above or at the shoulders. This is pretty inconvenient, especially given the fact that the seat doesn’t have a built in lock off, allowing you to clip the belt tightly.  Without the lock-off, I was left trying to wrestle the seat to get it in tightly. I never could get it tight enough. This has never happened to me.
My husband and I are both CPST’s (Certified Passenger Safety Technicians) and my husband couldn’t get the seat tight either. This hardly ever happens!!! The straps are flimsy and tend to twist. I’m so bummed that I threw away the box because I wish I could return the seat.
I get asked a lot about seat recommendations and I always tell parents that the seats in the US are all crash tested to the same specifications. What it comes down to is how easy it is to install. A seat is only safe if it is installed correctly. Safety 1st SummitMy husband was right, I should have spent the extra $100 and gotten a Britax.

Car Seat Installation Every Evening and Weekend Mornings

Due to high demand, Baby Bodyguards is now offering car seat installation every evening from 5:30PM-8:30PM and Saturdays and Sundays from 8AM to 10AM in Marine Park, Brooklyn. A Certified Child Passenger Safety Technician will demonstrate the proper way to use your seat and make sure you are comfortable installing the seat on your own before you leave. Call or email to make an appointment.

Come Join Us In Hoboken

Baby Bodyguards is thrilled to be participating in a Infant/Child CPR Class in Hoboken, February 26th.

We will be demonstrating the correct way to install a child safety seat and answering all your car seat questions.

If you have a babyproofing dilemma you need help with, feel free to ask us for help. You can even bring pictures, if it helps explain your child safety issue.

See you then!

SIGN UP BY CLIKING HERE

Car Seat Inspection Sites in New York

Here is the link fo car seat inspection sites in New York.

Baby Bodyguards doesn’t just inspect your seat, we teach you the correct way to install it as well, so you will be comfortable putting the seat back in if it needs to come out, or upgrading to the next stage seat.

We are often asked if we can just “inspect” a seat. The reason we don’t do this is because 9 out of 10 are installed incorrectly, and if we just make the necessary adjustments, chances are the parent will be calling us in a month or two when the car needs to go to the shop or they are traveling, and they will be stuck on the proper way to put the seat back in.

When the parent leaves us, they will be confident in their ability to install their own seat.

The 10 Most Common Car Seat Installation Errors We See

Baby Bodyguards staffs CPST’s who help  approximately 5 parents a day install their baby’s safety seat. We can’t help but take notice of the same errors we are seeing time and time again.

Here are the most common mistakes we see:

1-Using LATCH in a center seating position when it is not allowed by the manufacturer – most vehicles do not permit you to install a car seat in the center, using the two inner LATCH anchors from the side seating positions. Check your vehicle and child restraint manuals. If nothing is specifically mentioned to allow it, don’t do it.

2-Using LATCH and a seat belt together – you must use one system or the other, not both. Either method is safe when used correctly, so go with the method that gets you the best install

3- Using LATCH beyond the weight limit. LATCH is only good up to 40lbs unless otherwise stated in your vehicle or in the car seat manual. If the vehicle and car seat manuals defer to one another, err on the side of caution and assume a 40 lb limit.

4-Incorrect seat belt routing on a booster – make sure to read and follow the instructions for how to route the seat belt correctly over your child. Many boosters have arm rests that need the lap belt routed under them instead of over.

5- Loose car seat install – a car seat must be installed tightly enough that there is an inch or less of movement in all directions at the belt path when pushed or pulled on.

6-Incorrect belt path used on convertible seat install – you must use the belt path designated for the type of install you are doing. Usually the rear facing belt path runs under the child’s bottom/legs and the forward facing belt path runs behind their back.

7-Chest clip out of position (usually too low) – the chest clip should be at armpit level at all times.

8-Aftermarket accessories (head positioners, body padding/positioners, strap covers, hanging toys, under car seat mats/upholstery protectors, mirrors, suction cup window shades, seat belt tighteners/ratchets, bunting bags/liners, custom car seat covers, etc.) – if it did not come with your seat or is not specifically allowed by your car seat manual, don’t use it. The less “stuff” involved in your car seat install, the better. Nothing extra should go between the car seat and vehicle seat, the baby and the car seat, or the baby and the harness. Toys, mirrors, and window shades can come loose in a crash and injure passengers. Mats can interfere with an install. Many manufacturers will void the seat’s warranty if aftermarket products are used. There are no safety standards for these items, so even those that claim to be “crash tested” or “meet all federal safety standards” (there are none!) cannot be trusted as safe.

9- Not using the top tether anchor when the lower LATCH anchors are used for a forward facing seat – the top tether MUST be used when a seat is installed forward facing with LATCH.

10- Unfortunately the most common mistake we see, not by our clients, but just general observation, are parents riding around with babies/children with no car seat at all. I cringe every time I see this and just pray that child makes it through the early years without being subjected to a crash.

A Leap of Faith

For years I have lived a double life, NYC prosecutor (Deputy Bureau Chief) by day, wife, mom and Baby Bodyguards Founder by night, weekends and every spare moment in between. It became very difficult for me to balance everything and nurture both lives to the full extent they both deserved, so I did what needed to be done. After 6 years working for the city I quit. When I share this information with people they look horrified. They can’t understand how in the worst economy in decades, I left a stable, comfortable job with amazing benefits for the wacky, topsy turvy, roller coaster of being an entrepreneur (full time).

I took a leap of faith and am happier than I have been in years. I am so proud of what Baby Bodyguards has been able to accomplish over the past 4 years. We have baby proofed over 1000 homes in the NYC area, and met some of the most fascinating people whom we are now lucky enough to call friends.I now spend my days visiting doctors offices, holding lectures, installing car seats, testing products, consulting with architects, it’s bliss. Best of all, I can cook breakfast and dinner for my family and work from home when I need to.

I guess I’m sharing this because it was a very scary decision to make. So many of you have let me into your homes, and your lives and so many of the moms I meet on a daily basis are faced with the dilemma of trading in their corporate identity and 80 hour work weeks for the unknown. I still have over $100,000 of law school loans to pay back, but at the end of the day I call my own shots. I put all my eggs in MY basket, and I think it is the safest bet. In these crazy times the only thing I can bank on is my determination, and passion for what I’m doing, keeping babies safe and being around for my own kids.

I’d love to hear about other moms that threw caution to the wind and the outcome. Email me at Courtney@babybodyguards.com