The Santa Barbara County Emergency Media Services Agency has been awarded the California Department of Public Health Kids’ Plates Grant, which will provide 105 helmets and 32 convertible car seats for free to families in need.
The car seats and installation will be available at no-cost to qualifying families throughout the county. Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians will be available to install the carseats and give parents an overview of proper car seat use and adjustment, according to a news release.
The helmets provided through the grant will be available through bike camps conducted by SBBIKE + COAST. Thanks to the grant, more children will be able to attend the camps with proper helmet protection.
“Public access and education are integral strategies in our continued commitment to our community’s safety,” Nick Clay, director for the County EMS Agency, said in a statement. “We are excited to team up with state and local partners to bring this commitment to reality.”
The car seats and helmets are designed to prevent bicycle and car seat-related injuries. According to Safe Kids, there are about 240,000 emergency room visits per year for kids and teens ages 19 and under due to bicycle-related injuries. In addition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 59% of car seats are misused in a way that could reduce effective protection.
For more information, visit the EMS Agency’s website at countyofsb.org/phd/ems/safeandactive.sbc.