Parents want their kids to be safe while traveling. According to a recent Evenflo study, car seat safety is top of mind among moms. Nearly 75 percent of moms are extremely concerned about car seat safety and nine out of ten moms say they are in the know when it comes to their child and car seat safety.
What parents might not know is that their cars are equipped with special tools that do keep kids safe–Lower Anchorages and Tethers for Children (LATCH). LATCH is a standardized child restraint anchorage system that facilitates correct installation of car seats and allows them to be installed without using the vehicle’s seat belt system. LATCH makes the correct installation of car seats easier and avoids any confusion that might be caused by the numerous types of vehicle seat belt systems on the market today.
It is important that parents educate themselves on LATCH; however, according to the study, when it comes to knowledge on LATCH, moms are lacking. One third of moms, which rises to over half of moms who are pregnant, are not familiar with LATCH and only one out of four moms uses LATCH to install child’s car seats.
Moms can learn about LATCH from a variety of sources including the information guides that come with the car seats.
“LATCH is one of the most significant innovations when it comes to car seat safety and proper installation,” said Lindsay Harris, Vice President of Corporate Engineering and Quality for Evenflo. “It is critical for car seat manufacturers to make information about car seat safety very visible in both the users’ guides and on their Web sites to teach moms about LATCH.”
When installing a car seat using LATCH, Harris recommends always reading the car seat’s instructions and vehicle owner’s manual for proper use and correct installation information.
Since September 1, 2002, all automobile manufacturers are required to install two sets of small bars in the rear seat of all vehicles, generally located where the vehicle seat cushion meets the seat back. All child restraint systems are required to have permanently attached hardware designed to attach to these vehicle anchorages. Together, the lower anchorages and the top tether anchorage make up the LATCH system.
Car seat manufacturers’ Web sites can serve as useful resources of information on LATCH. At Evenflo’s Web site, www.evenflo.com/safetymadeeasier, you can find out how Evenflo is committed to educating moms on the benefits of LATCH as well as unlimited access to free educational tools such as car seat installation videos. A step-by-step, how-to video is available for every Evenflo car seat.
The LATCH system was designed to make it easier for parents to install child safety seats correctly.