Most First Time Parents Use Infant Car Seats Incorrectly

By Abby Reed
NewsWest 9

ODESSA - Being a first time parent can be very overwhelming.  In the midst of the information overload parents face, many can overlook important things, like correctly strapping their infant into a car seat. 

According to local safety educator Tammy Shupp, 97% of first time parents incorrectly strap their infant into a car seat.  Shupp teaches parents how to install car seats.

Jenny McSpadden, a first time mom, attended one of Shupp's classes just before her baby, Rylie, was born.

"Just keeping her more safe, before she wouldn't have been buckled in the right way, so she wouldn't have been safe if we had gotten into a car accident," McSpadden said.

"New parents are in that information overload age, and I think it's just overwhelming, the information they get," Shupp said.

According to Shupp, it's easy for parents to be misled into buying expensive carriers that offer extra gadgets.  However, she said the safest car seat is the one a parent can install correctly.

"It's just as dangerous to do it incorrectly, as it is to carry a child in your lap in the vehicle and not use one at all," Shupp said.

Shupp says there are about a dozen certified child seat technicians in the Permian Basin who can teach first time parents how to properly install their baby's car seat.

For more information about those resources, visit