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How to protect your child from a seatback collapse

If you are a parent, the young ones in your family are the most precious cargo you ever carry in your car, truck or SUV. For that reason, you must always use a size-appropriate car seat or booster seat until your children are big enough to be compatible with your vehicle’s restraint system.

After all, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, being in a car seat cuts a child’s chances of suffering an injury in a motor vehicle accident by as much as 82%. Still, car seats provide little protection when front seatbacks collapse.

Why do seatbacks sometimes fail?

The internal components that hold your car’s front seats in their upright position might be flimsier than you think. Especially during a rear-end collision, these components can break. If that happens, your front seatback can fail and fall backward.

Regrettably, if your son or daughter is sitting in a car seat behind a collapsed seatback, he or she can suffer potentially fatal crush injuries.

How can you keep your child safe?

Your car’s seatback can weigh between 20 and 50 pounds. While this is enough weight to cause serious injuries, the real threat comes from the combined weight of a seatback and adult passenger. Therefore, to keep your child safe, it is advisable to place your child’s car seat behind a vacant front passenger seat whenever possible. You should never put the car seat in the front seat, though.

Even if you are careful, you may not be able to eliminate your child’s chances of suffering a catastrophic crush injury in a seatback failure. Ultimately, though, you may be eligible for significant financial compensation to help you cover the medical expenses your child needs to recover completely.