A new study on child car seats shows a lot of parents have trouble installing them but don't think you're dumb or not mechanically inclined - it may not be your fault.
A frustrating feat for any parent of a child that still requires restraint seats is installing the restraint correctly. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety released a study on the latch restraint system. It's required on every car and most other vehicles manufactured since 2002.
Video shows the tough time their volunteer parents had installing it.
Anne McCartt with the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety said poor design by auto manufacturers is partly to blame, like seat belt buckles blocking access to the anchor that holds the restraint in place.
"What we found is that automakers could be doing a better job, in many vehicles, at making it easier for parents to install child restraints," said McCartt.
But parents are being challenged too for not using the tether that extends from the top of the restraint seats.
"We think many parents may believe the tether is optional but the tether isn't optional. It's absolutely essential to getting the best protection from a forward-facing child seat," said McCartt.
To drive home that point, the institute ran tests to demonstrate what happens if the top tether is not attached.
Both the Bakersfield Police Department and California Highway Patrol do free car seat safety checks. Just call the agencies to make an appointment:
Bakersfield Police Department: 661-327-7111
California Highway Patrol: 661-864-4444