KIMT News 3 – A two vehicle accident left four injured on Tuesday afternoon, including a four month old baby.
As of Wednesday evening, the child and his mother are listed in fair condition at Mercy Medical Center North Iowa. Authorities on the scene of the accident tell us they believe it’s a miracle everyone survived, especially since both cars were completely totaled.
Official reports say that two of the motorists were not wearing seat belts, but that the mother and child were, and Lt. Dan Schaffer tells us there is no doubt in his mind that these safety belts saved their lives.
“In my personal experience, through the course of my time doing this job, safety belts save lives,” Schaffer says, “and in this case, these safety belts saved two.”
Jo Beck, a volunteer with the North Central Iowa Volunteer Child Safety Program, says she is surprised and thankful that the child’s injuries were so minor. She says, “100% of all parents who use a car seat think that they are doing everything correctly, but statistics show that only about 25% of children are properly secured in a car seat.”
In this case, the four month old was properly secured in a rear facing car seat that was up to code with the child’s height and weight. Since so many people misuse car seats, Beck says this is a learning opportunity for everyone. Taking the extra time and double checking your child’s safety seat will only help keep them safe in the event that anything happens.
Beck and folks with the child safety program also want to remind parents to use new, and throw out the old. Re-using hand-me-down car seats might seem like a financially responsible idea, but like anything else, car seats can expire over time, and Beck tells us parents should retire safety seats once they have been used for at least five years.
The crash is still under investigation, and officials are working to determine the cause of the accident as soon as possible. We will have more information as it becomes available.