Motor vehicle collisions are the leading cause of death and serious injury for Canadians of all ages, including children. This includes traffic collisions, those that occur on public streets and highways, and non-traffic collisions, which occur elsewhere, such as off-road. For more information on injury-related deaths in Simcoe Muskoka, please visit the HealthSTATS pages on injury-related deaths.
Many injuries and deaths are directly related to the nonuse or misuse of child restraints. As of September 1st, 2005, any person transporting children in their vehicle is required to ensure they are properly secured in an infant seat, child seat, or booster seat.
Booster seats are required for children under the age of eight, weighing more than 18 kg but less than 36 kg (40-80 lbs) or who stand less than 145 cm (4 feet 9 inches) tall. For more information, please visit the health unit's website on car seat safety.
According to the Rapid Risk Factor Surveillance System (RRFSS) in Simcoe Muskoka:
- In 2007, 93% (87.2%, 97.9%) of households with children (four-seven years of age) reported that the child always travels in the back of their vehicle, strapped in a booster seat or car seat.
- Reported use of booster seats increased significantly in 2005 coinciding with the introduction of new “booster seat” legislation (September – December), when compared the first eight months of the year (January – August).
- Reported booster seat use continued to increase into 2006 before stabilizing in 2007 (see Figure 1).