September 17 to the 22 is National Child Passenger Safety Week, urging parents to make sure their child's safety seat is installed properly.

AAA Texas offered a reminder to parents with children in car seats.

“While strides have been made to make car seats easier to use, the overwhelming majority of car seats are still not installed properly,” said AAA Texas/New Mexico Representative Doug Shupe.  “AAA Texas reminds parents to protect their most precious cargo by having their car seat installations inspected by a professional.”

According to 2010 statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death among children between the ages of 3 to 14. The administration said that car seat safety reduces the risk of death by as much as 71 percent, but nearly 75 percent of car seats are not installed properly.

Parents can ensure their child's car seat is properly installed by reading the safety seat instructions and owner's manual of their vehicle. Car seats are often installed too loosely and should not be able to move in any direction by more than an inch. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends keeping a child in a rear-facing car seat until they are two. There are many organizations, including pediatric clinics, fire departments and other community centers, that provide installation of car seats by certified child passenger safety technicians.

The New York State Police in Troop D recently announced that they will be participating in National Child Passenger Safety Week by conducting free child safety checks throughout various locations across the state.

“You can never predict or control what other drivers might do or how the weather might change the safety of a roadway,” said Major Rodney Campbell, Troop D commander. “The best way to protect your kids is to put them in the right car seats for their age and size and use those seats correctly on every trip, every time. By attending the car seat event, parents and caregivers can be sure their kids are riding as safely as possible.”

The Illinois Department of Transportation teamed up with the Illinois Secretary of State and AAA in the Cookies, Cuddles and Car Seats campaign to increase awareness in grandparents' role in keeping kids safe while traveling. Illinois law requires that all children under the age of 13 are to ride in the back seat.

Put the brakes on child deaths by buckling your children and ensuring their car seats are installed correctly.