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Taking Action: Avoid heavy coats & car seats

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - As the cold weather arrives, it's normal to bundle up the kids in heavy gear. A bulky jacket and a car seat, however, is a dangerous combination.

Generally, safety experts recommend NOT using winter coats underneath the harness of a car seat. The reason? Bulky fabrics can make the harness too loose to be effective in a crash.

Consumer Reports offers a simple way to check if your child's coat is too big to wear under a harness.

Here are some of the tips:

    • Put the coat on your child, sit them in the child seat and fasten the harness. Tighten the harness until you can no longer pinch any of the harness webbing with your thumb and forefinger
    • Without loosening the harness, remove your child from the child seat
    • Take the coat off, and put your child back in the child seat and buckle the harness straps, which are still adjusted as they were when he was wearing the coat
    • If you can now pinch the webbing between your thumb and forefinger, then the coat is too bulky to be worn under the harness

 

To read more, check out this alert from ConsumerReports.org.

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