(New Orleans, La.) – Motor vehicle injuries are the leading cause of death among children aged 1-14 in Louisiana, according to the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals. Protective equipment that could prevent these injuries, such as car seats, booster seats and seat belts, are mostly not used correctly or not present in these cases.
Recognizing that many families cannot afford to buy the proper child safety seats, University Medical Center New Orleans (University Medical Center New Orleans)’s Louisiana Passenger Safety Task Force, a division of the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission, has partnered with Kergan Bros. Sonic group to develop and sell a 2016 SONIC® Tot calendar that celebrates the holidays and includes car seat safety tips, over $45 worth of SONIC® coupon discounts and a listing of local fairs and festivals. All proceeds will be directed to the Louisiana Passenger Safety Task Force to purchase and distribute child safety seats based on family needs in the region.
“We realize that many families in Louisiana cannot afford car seats for their children, which prompted us to find a way to get car seats for low income, needy families,” said Gary Wilkerson, President of the Kergan Bros. Sonic group. “It is going to be our mission to keep children safe in a car.”
"When used correctly, child restraints are the number one factor in reducing serious injuries and death in motor vehicle crashes,” said Bridget Gardner, RN, Community Injury Prevention Program Coordinator at University Medical Center New Orleans. “This partnership provides an avenue to reach the unrestrained population to prevent the injuries that we far too often witness as a Level 1 Trauma Center.”
The 2016 Sonic Tot calendars are on sale for $5 each at participating SONIC® locations while supplies last. For a full list of the participating SONIC® locations, visit sonic-blast.com/locations.
It's estimated that 96% of all child restraints are installed incorrectly. Through the Louisiana Passenger Safety Task Force, University Medical Center New Orleans also offers free Child Safety Seat Installation fittings on Wednesdays from 1 – 4 p.m. at Louisiana State Police Troop B, 2101 I-10 Service Road in Kenner.
To encourage participants to attend the Child Seat Safety Seat Installation fittings, the SONIC® Tot mascot will attend Troop B’s fitting on Wednesday, December 2, 1 - 4 p.m. and provide free 2016 SONIC® Tot calendars to the first 50 attendees. Participants will learn how to select the proper child restraint, ensure that the child is placed into the restraint properly and install the restraint correctly in their vehicle. Everyone who participates in the Child Safety Seat Installation program will receive one-on-one instruction from National Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians or Instructors. SONIC® will provide food and refreshments.