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  1. #1
    CPS Fanatic Morganthe's Avatar
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    Exclamation Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    Child Safety Seats Save Lives
    by Mark Bell, Regional VP & Gen Manager AAA Texas
    "Texas Journey" magazine published by AAA Texas.
    Jan/Feb 2007, page 4
    http://www.aaa-texas.com/journey/
    (Does not have current issue online)

    "Every day, children throughout Texas are put in harm's way because this state simply has the weakest child passenger safety seat law in the nation:
    In Texas, only children under age five and under 36 inches tall (The typical height of a two year old) must ride in safety seats.
    According to the National Heighway Traffic Safety Administration, all but 12 states require children who are too small to fit proplerly in seat belts to ride in booster or other safety seats.

    Motor vehicle crashes are the No.1 cause of injury and death of children under age 14. Instead of helping to improve these statistics, Texas' inadequate child passenger safety seat law contributes to these high rates of injury and death. ........

    A new Texas Department of Public Safety reports cites an AAA study that shows booster seats can reduce the risk of injury for children between four and eight years old by 60 percent. .......

    This year, the Texas legislature will consider passing a new law supprted by AAA Texas and a coalition of safety advocates. HB 118, authored by Rep. Fred Brown, and SB 60, authored by Sen. Judith Zaffirini, would require children under eight to ride in safety seats (unless a child is four feet nine inches or taller).

    Please join us in this effort to save lives.
    Contact your state lawmakers and urge them to approve this legislation to make Texas roads safer for our children. Visit www.capitol.state.tx.us and click on 'Members,' located under both "Texas House" and "Texas Senate.".....

    (signed) Mark Bell, Reg. VP & Gen Manager AAA Texas.



    Excerpted from editiorial. Less than 50% of original content. Omissions include information relating to how adult seatbelts poorly suit children and guidelines to determine whether or not child is ready for an adult seatbelt.
    My Munchkin -- Nov 2008--5 years, 45.5", 42lbs
    Current Stats: 12 years old /5'5/ 115lbs/ Seatbelt

    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." Phillip K. Dick

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  3. #2
    CPST Instructor
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    We are working on changing the law here in my good ol' state of Texas. This time around we have a $25M dollar grant backing us via Tx Dot. So, If anyone on here is from Texas call your Senator, Congressman/woman, State Rep, etc... to show your support for this bill.

    I will be shocked that this bill doesn't pass this year with the finanical backing the state to pass it.
    Jenny
    Senior CPS Tech-Instructor & Mommy of 2 girls
    K1 12 yrs old- 61" & 100lbs in vehicle seat belt
    K2 10 yrs old- 59" & 92lbs in vehicle seat belt

  4. #3
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    Wow, I'm in Texas too. Thanks for the information, I hadn't heard about this. We sure do need a better law and for them to be working on 8 and under (as opposed to 6 which is where I would have guessed they'd go next) is fabulous!!!
    I'll look up who I should be calling .
    C.

  5. #4
    CPS Technician bombedier's Avatar
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    This is very interesting and encouraging. I am invovled with the Kyle David Miller Foundation (Importance of 5pt Safety Harness YouTube video) which is based out of TX. One of our aims is to have the car seat safety laws toughened up. We would be intereseted in getting invovled and helping. Please contact me at laura@kyledavdimiller.org.

  6. #5
    CPST Instructor
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    Quote Originally Posted by bombedier View Post
    This is very interesting and encouraging. I am invovled with the Kyle David Miller Foundation (Importance of 5pt Safety Harness YouTube video) which is based out of TX. One of our aims is to have the car seat safety laws toughened up. We would be intereseted in getting invovled and helping. Please contact me at laura@kyledavdimiller.org.
    Can I ask do you have CPS tech helping you with your mission? Also getting involved with your local Safe Kids coalition/chapter is the best way to up to date info on the booster bill. We will be going to Austin in April to lobby but I am up in the Dallas area.

    If you need helping finding a local chapter please let me know and I can direct you to the right people.
    Jenny
    Senior CPS Tech-Instructor & Mommy of 2 girls
    K1 12 yrs old- 61" & 100lbs in vehicle seat belt
    K2 10 yrs old- 59" & 92lbs in vehicle seat belt

  7. #6
    Senior Community Member tjham's Avatar
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    Arizona's laws are pretty bad also...

  8. #7
    Carseat Crazy BrookeSLP's Avatar
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    Another Texan here. I do so wish we had appropriate laws!
    Mom to 4

  9. #8
    CPS Fanatic Morganthe's Avatar
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    Quote Originally Posted by BrookeSLP View Post
    Another Texan here. I do so wish we had appropriate laws!
    So do I.... drive 6 miles over the speed limit in the middle of nowhere and you WILL get stopped to be fined $145 by State Highway patrolman! I learned this 4 weeks after I moved here. Thankfully, the applicable county court was near enough to drive to and throw myself on the mercy of the small town judge. He thought dd was 'darlin', I was a 'right nice' mother, and the case was dismissed. Utter relief on my part.

    Everywhere I've lived, and it's been many, outside city limits or traffic areas, there is always a 10-11mph overage as a little leeway, especially when there's a hill or the speed limit changes which both were the case in my situation. Not here in this area of this great state. Thankfully, I didn't have one of them 'angin judges

    Amazing thing is that there are so many red light runners in this city of 120,000. Who really cares about slight speeding out of town? It's more dangerous here. There's two primary reasons -- Yellow lights are extremely short and the speed in town is 35-40mph on the main roads. There's just not enough time to stop even when your complete attention is on the next intersection.

    Last week, it was so nice I had the window down... The light turned green, but I didn't move. Don't know why really. Seemed like slow motion, but I turned my head and just watched this car approach at around 30 mph. The driver hit her brakes and it screamed to a stop eventually in the middle of the intersection. There was smoke coming out the sides and I could smell the brake lining. Funny thing is that the guy across from me was honking his horn all angry because he was waiting to make a left turn after I took the right away, and I hadn't moved. He hadn't even noticed this small car that had slid in front of both of us!! Have I entered the Twilight zone somehow?
    My Munchkin -- Nov 2008--5 years, 45.5", 42lbs
    Current Stats: 12 years old /5'5/ 115lbs/ Seatbelt

    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." Phillip K. Dick

  10. #9
    CPST Instructor
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    Where in Texas is everyone? I am in Frisco just an hour north of Dallas.
    Jenny
    Senior CPS Tech-Instructor & Mommy of 2 girls
    K1 12 yrs old- 61" & 100lbs in vehicle seat belt
    K2 10 yrs old- 59" & 92lbs in vehicle seat belt

  11. #10
    Senior Community Member Amaris's Avatar
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    We lived in TX for 3 years, and the child restraint laws were horrible. If that wasn't bad enough, I did not once, in the town we lived in, see a police officer inforcing the laws they did have then. I have actually seem a police officer going down the street behind a car that had several children (ages appeared to be between 2 and 6) actually jumping up and down facing out the rear window, and nothing was done. When I called the local police dept. to complain I was told that they couldn't take the time to pull over everyone who didn't use a car seat because that's all they would ever be doing! They do need tougher laws, but they also need to work on enforcing the ones they already have. I went to toys r us (the town didn't have a bru) to buy a marathon when my oldest outgrew his snugride and the saleslady actually told me not to bother!! According to her it was a waste of $270 when I could get this wonderful cosco overhead shield seat for $40!! I said thank you but no thanks, I'll take my marathon. Not only do they need tougher laws, they need programs to educate people. Not just cps certification programs, but programs that are well publicized and held in spaces large enough to hold very large groups. They may not learn as much as they would in a cps course, but they would be able to get the basics and that would really help. Sorry for the ramble, but while I agree that tougher laws are good, personally I think education is the key.

  12. #11
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    In Austin here. I want to know why they set up speed traps (one got me a while back..didn't have my new license yet and my insurance info was filed away at home ...oooops ) on stretches of road where there are no homes, businesses, feeder roads etc. BUT 1/4 mile away everyone is speeding through the school zone????
    C.

  13. #12
    Car-Seat.Org Zealot skaterbabs's Avatar
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    Because speed traps generate revenue. They are not particularly effect as deterrents and that is not their purpose, which is why they're illegal in some states.
    Rebekah Branch, CPST from May 2005 until June 2011
    Mom to CJ (7/96, seatbelt), Gregory (4/98, seatbelt), & Joyjoy (10/03, misc. booster seats)
    "That which you create in beauty and goodness and truth lives on."
    - Denis Waitley

  14. #13
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    I called my reps. First office was very friendly and cheerful. She admitted she didn't know much about the bill . The second office clarified before I got off that I was 'for' the bill!!
    Made me wonder whether these bills are generating much opposition. I guess a lot of folks with kids in belts might not want to 'go back' to a seat or booster.
    Too bad!
    C.

  15. #14
    CPS Fanatic Morganthe's Avatar
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    Quote Originally Posted by mamato2 View Post
    Made me wonder whether these bills are generating much opposition. I guess a lot of folks with kids in belts might not want to 'go back' to a seat or booster.
    Too bad!
    C.
    The opposition might also try to use the argument that this will target, hamper, or punish the poor because they can't afford to follow the law Never mind that its the poor families that have it the hardest trying to keep their kids safe because the information on how to do so just isn't easily accessible in Texas.
    My Munchkin -- Nov 2008--5 years, 45.5", 42lbs
    Current Stats: 12 years old /5'5/ 115lbs/ Seatbelt

    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." Phillip K. Dick

  16. #15
    CPST Instructor
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    I spoke to our area SK coordinator on Thursday a little more on the new booster bill. Come to find out why the bill 2 yrs ago was shoot down was they (our reps) thought they were voting in a bill that required children to be in a 3pt/5pt harness car seat and not boosters. Most had no idea what a booster seat was.

    This year a lot of the major SK chapters in Texas are donating boosters for our sentors & house reps to actually see and play with. This way there is no doubt what they a voting in. Plus we are going after a bill with no weight limit just age & height (8 & 4'9"). But, To get the $25m Tx Dot grant the law as to be better then 7yrs of age.

    The grant money is to be used to help distribute CR & education to orginazations for those families in need. So, This way there is no excuse as the resources will be there for parents.
    Jenny
    Senior CPS Tech-Instructor & Mommy of 2 girls
    K1 12 yrs old- 61" & 100lbs in vehicle seat belt
    K2 10 yrs old- 59" & 92lbs in vehicle seat belt

  17. #16
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    There is even a lot of confusion out there among parents as to what a booster is and WHY they are needed. Many think booster = a no back seat only.
    I had a friend tell me she thinks the YouTube video about the 3 yr old who was killed while using a booster (Isabella) would be a good thing to use while lobbying for the 'booster' bill. (??) I think showing the senators and reps actual boosters is an EXCELLENT idea. Maybe some photos of kids of the age that this bill will affect sitting in a car with just the belt! Or even some real kids in real cars!!!
    I am hoping that there will be some money with this bill to EDUCATE as well as require usage of seats/boosters.
    A bit disconnected but a few of my thoughts .
    C.

  18. #17
    CPST Instructor
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    Quote Originally Posted by mamato2 View Post
    There is even a lot of confusion out there among parents as to what a booster is and WHY they are needed. Many think booster = a no back seat only.
    I had a friend tell me she thinks the YouTube video about the 3 yr old who was killed while using a booster (Isabella) would be a good thing to use while lobbying for the 'booster' bill. (??) I think showing the senators and reps actual boosters is an EXCELLENT idea. Maybe some photos of kids of the age that this bill will affect sitting in a car with just the belt! Or even some real kids in real cars!!!
    I am hoping that there will be some money with this bill to EDUCATE as well as require usage of seats/boosters.
    A bit disconnected but a few of my thoughts .
    C.

    There are several parents that will be speaking on behalf of the bill that had a booster seat save their child's life.

    Yes, The grant money is for education and seats. Local SK chapters & other orginazations can apply for grant money to use to help their community.
    Jenny
    Senior CPS Tech-Instructor & Mommy of 2 girls
    K1 12 yrs old- 61" & 100lbs in vehicle seat belt
    K2 10 yrs old- 59" & 92lbs in vehicle seat belt

  19. #18
    mena
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    Quote Originally Posted by Morganthe View Post
    So do I.... drive 6 miles over the speed limit in the middle of nowhere and you WILL get stopped to be fined
    I hardly ever drive over the speed limit and when I do I try to always stay under 5 miles over. I let all the zippy people speed to their deaths and I stay alert and watch out for them around me. Way too many impatient people and they should have a year without a vehicle to appreciate how swiftly they are travelling even at "only" 35 mph. I lived in NY without a vehicle for 25+ years and walked everywhere or took a bus. There's nothing like walking 12 blocks there and back with a cart to the grocery store in ice and snow to make you really appreciate how fast and convenient even the slowest of cars is!

    Quote Originally Posted by Morganthe View Post
    Seemed like slow motion, but I turned my head and just watched this car approach at around 30 mph. The driver hit her brakes and it screamed to a stop eventually in the middle of the intersection. There was smoke coming out the sides and I could smell the brake lining. Funny thing is that the guy across from me was honking his horn all angry because he was waiting to make a left turn after I took the right away?
    I read this 3 times to try and picture it right in my head. Do you mean the car approached you from oopsite or from the cross street? If you were going north, what direction was that car heading? I assume they ran the red light running E-W?

    What did you mean "take the right away"? I keep reading that one over and over and I can't figure it out. Did you mean you were turning right and the guy behind you wanted to turn left?

    People always seem to get so angry and impatient in cars. My ex boyfriend once told me to never worry about the person waiting behind you because they can't see what you see and just because they are mad at you and want you to move doesn't mean they're right. And anyway, you're firs in line so they just have to wait, that's how it works.

    Too many pedestrians actually get injured or killed by drivers who are second in line pulling out and trying to get around the person they think should get out of their way. Then they hit a pedestrian that the first in line was trying to defer the right of way to, as we are all supposed to. A pedestrian ALWAYS has the right of way.

    And when we get out of our cars it would be good if we remember we are all pedestrians who deserve the same respect under the law.

  20. #19
    CPS Fanatic Morganthe's Avatar
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    Quote Originally Posted by mena View Post
    Originally Posted by Morganthe
    "Seemed like slow motion, but I turned my head and just watched this car approach at around 30 mph. The driver hit her brakes and it screamed to a stop eventually in the middle of the intersection. There was smoke coming out the sides and I could smell the brake lining. Funny thing is that the guy across from me was honking his horn all angry because he was waiting to make a left turn after I took the right away? "

    -----------------------

    I read this 3 times to try and picture it right in my head. Do you mean the car approached you from oopsite or from the cross street? If you were going north, what direction was that car heading? I assume they ran the red light running E-W?

    What did you mean "take the right away"? I keep reading that one over and over and I can't figure it out. Did you mean you were turning right and the guy behind you wanted to turn left?
    The intersection was a 4pt cross street that was North-South/ East-West

    My direction was heading westward from the eastern part of town.
    Truck w. guy honking (from the west ->east) across from me waiting to make left turn to go North.
    I had the right of way since he was crossing the traffic flow. (No left turn lane at that time due to construction)

    The car that slid through the red light was coming from the south -> continuing north.

    If I had proceeded to go with the green light, the car would have t-boned me on my driver's door within the intersection. And I go granny slow when I enter intersections these days.
    That's how long of a pause I made after the light turned from red. Pretty scary.

    I hope this presents a better image of what I was talking about
    Last edited by Morganthe; 03-04-2007 at 02:40 PM. Reason: clarification of directions
    My Munchkin -- Nov 2008--5 years, 45.5", 42lbs
    Current Stats: 12 years old /5'5/ 115lbs/ Seatbelt

    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." Phillip K. Dick

  21. #20
    CPS Fanatic Morganthe's Avatar
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    Re: Changing the Child seat law in Texas

    Quote Originally Posted by mena View Post
    Then they hit a pedestrian that the first in line was trying to defer the right of way to, as we are all supposed to. A pedestrian ALWAYS has the right of way.

    And when we get out of our cars it would be good if we remember we are all pedestrians who deserve the same respect under the law.
    Actually, no, a pedestrian doesn't ALWAYS have the right of way. Only on marked crossings and only when traffic flow allows that yield safely. Someone who runs out on a crosswalk without making sure that drivers see them and can stop safely is a dumb idiot. (And I"m not talking about children, only adults).

    At marked 4 way intersections+ crosswalks in cities -- Some of the blame should be laid on traffic designers & schedulers. They have made it impossible to walk at a normal pace across the street, without enough time for waiting cars to make it through the intersection before the light turns red. That fear of sitting through yet another cycle of lights is what makes many drivers impatient. And when there are mobs of pedestrians and constant missing lights, there is going to be problems no matter what.

    I like what I'd see in Europe and maybe some cities in US have adopted. The entire intersection turns red to traffic and allows pedestrians to cross diagnially (sp?) or across as they please following all sorts of lines. Then it is the turn for the vehicles to cycle through each direction without worrying about pedestrians. It would allow drivers to focus on where they were headed and other drivers. I prefered those intersections as a pedestrian AND as a driver.
    My Munchkin -- Nov 2008--5 years, 45.5", 42lbs
    Current Stats: 12 years old /5'5/ 115lbs/ Seatbelt

    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." Phillip K. Dick

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