Child Safety Seat Tutorial

I came across this video and like it a lot. There’s nothing entertaining here … it’s just S-A-F-E-T-Y. Straightforward, plain and simple, but it’s also pretty comprehensive.

It demonstrates how to put in both the front facing type of car seat and the rear facing car carrier with the base attachment. It also shows how to hook up the seats with a seat belt and with the LATCH system (in cars 2002 or newer).

I have installed a car seat or two in my day and I really never thought to put your full weight on the seat or base like the demonstrator does in the video. I have pressed down on the seats and bases in an effort to get them tight and synched up, but seeing the video it makes sense and I’ll probably try to tighten up my car seats when I go home tonight.

I know that a lot of car sales people take car seats for granted, but it is really not something that should be overlooked. Case in point: A few years back (before the intoduction of LATCH and when the internet was still considered just a tool for rich geeks and college kids), I was selling a new car to a woman who had just gotten in an accident. Her previous car, a 1984 Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight Recency sedan, was totalled out and she didn’t want to mess around with used cars anymore so she decided to get a brand new one. This customer was moving up 16 years into her new car and there were some major differences between her old car and the new one. Now car salespeople aren’t generally in the habit of showing customers how to install a car seat in their new vehicle. We usually just assume that if the customer has a car seat, they’ll know how to install it in their new vehicle. In the example above, I didn’t show the customer how to install her child’s seat, but I did take the time to show her how the seat belts worked. She had never owned a car with retractable, locking belts before so that was new to her. I remember telling her that for car seats to pull it out all the way and that she would hear a clicking sound as it retracted and locked in position. It was just a normal thing that I included in my new car delivery presentation.

I didn’t think anything of it until about a month later when I saw the customer out and about. When she saw me, she told me that she owed me a multitude of thanks. She went on to describe how she used my seatbelt demonstration info when she put her baby’s car seat in her new car. About two weeks later, she had to slam on her brakes and steer clear of an accident that happened right in front of her. She was shaken up – understandably – because of the accident that happened with her Oldsmobile just three weeks prior to this. But she said it was her instinct to turn around and check on her baby, who was awake and crying, but safe and sound. Then my customer’s eyes looked like they were about to well up with tears as she told me she wanted to thank me for telling her about the locking, retractable seatbelts. She said that if I hadn’t shown her how the belts worked, that she probably would have installed the seat wrong and her baby might have been injured or worse.

I’ve worked in car sales for about 11 years now and this was, without a doubt, the most gratifying moment of my tenure in the biz. So if it’s relevant to you, please watch the video above. There’s nothing entertaining about it … it’s just S-A-F-E-T-Y.

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