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Children in some rear seats more vulnerable, says report

A nationally respected watchdog group for the automotive industry has issued a disheartening warning to parents in a report that draws from over 50 years of data to discern where it safest and least safe to place a child in a vehicle. According to the report, The Center for Auto Safety claimed children in a rear seat position may meet a grizzly death if the seat in front of them is also occupied.

The picture painted by the report is not a pretty one. Between 1990 and 2014, the CAS documented about 900 cases where a child seated behind an occupant was killed in a rear-impact accident. The report goes on to claim that the increased risk in this situation is due to the tendency of occupied front seats to collapse into the seat behind during a rear impact.

The CAS calls on federal guidelines to be more specific in their specifications of where a child should be placed, noting that while the guidelines currently note that the rear seat is the safest place for a child, it does so without "providing parents any recommendation on where in the rear seat the child should be placed," according to Clarence Ditlow, executive director of CAS.

According to the report, while placing a child in the rear seat is safest statistically, it is even safer to place behind a seat that is unoccupied if possible, so that a passenger in the front seat does not inadvertently crush the rear-seat occupant in a rear-impact accident.

Of course, these kinds of measure can only reduce the statistical likelihood of death or injury. Unfortunately, accidents happen all the time to drivers who are observing all the safest practices. If you have been injured in an accident, the assistance of an experienced attorney can help you recover fair compensation for your injuries and protect your rights.

Source: AutoBlog, "Kids sitting in rear seats are vulnerable in certain car crashes," Pete Bigelow, accessed Nov. 15, 2016

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