More people being ticketed for improperly buckling in kids

More people being ticketed for improperly buckling in kids
WASHINGTON STATE -- It's something you parents do every day.
Before heading out to run your errands, you have to buckle your child into their car seat or booster seat. But are you sure you're doing it right? KEPR found out more people are getting ticketed for improperly buckling in their kids.

Jaime Scott makes sure her daughter is always buckled up.

"I put her arms through, like this, and I make sure it's all the way loose." And that little Georgia is properly secured as well. "Then I pull so I can get the right tightness."

She knows the clip needs to be at the chest, and the seat rear-facing.
She also takes off little Georgia's jacket because that creates a barrier for safety.

"The infancy is one of my biggest worries because so many things can go wrong," she said.

But unlike Jaime, a lot parents are doing it wrong, or not doing it at all.
Washington State Patrol pulled over and ticketed about 500 more people across the state last year compared to the year before.
The numbers had dipped in 2012 before shooting right up again.

Violations can include an unbuckled or improperly-buckled child, having no booster seat, or facing the wrong way.

Jenna Boogerd is a Child Passenger Safety Technician.
She installs car seats for parents and sees the mistakes all the time.

"Unfortunately it doesn't surprise me, with the amount of people that we have coming here, we do offer car seat checks, and they're misusing the seat, it's out of complete innocence, they don't know that they're not using it properly," said Boogerd.

Even out of complete innocence or ignorance, the child could be at risk.

"She's my one and only, and my true love, and I just want her to be in there properly," said Scott.

In the past, troopers have said they expect the number of tickets to fluctuate year to year. This can happen based on patrols or changes in the laws.

Tickets for child restraints are a primary violation which means police don't need another reason to pull you over first before you are cited. Boogerd offers her seat belt checks on a donation basis at any time at her store, Swanky Babies, in downtown Kennewick. But State Patrol and the Health District offer them as well. Look for the link on this website under "Newslinks."