Expert: Some Valley parents put kids at risk, don't use car seat - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Expert: Some Valley parents put kids at risk, don't use car seat

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PHOENIX (CBS5) -

A deadly car crash in Phoenix Monday that killed three children, is raising new concerns about kids and car seats.

There were indications at the accident site that the victims were not buckled up.

Linda Gorman, with AAA Arizona, said Arizona has had a bad track record when it comes to protecting kids in cars.

"Up until August 2012, we were one of the weakest. Arizona had one of the weakest child passenger laws in the entire country," said Gorman. "We were doing a really poor job, especially protecting older children when they got out of an infant seat."

For years, Arizona did not have any booster seat requirements for children 5 and up.

However, state lawmakers changed that in 2012, requiring kids to have a booster seat until they're 8 years old or 4'9" tall.

Deb Razar will not go anywhere with her son Levi, 4, and daughter Phoebe, 7, unless they are strapped in and buckled up.

"My responsibility as a parent is to make sure my kids are safe at all times," said Razar. "When you're in a car, a car is a machine and in order to keep them safe, they've got to be buckled."

A recent CBS 5 News investigation found several children bouncing around in cars with no seat belts and no car seats.

Many of the parents CBS 5 News confronted had an assortment of excuses.

There's reason to believe the three children killed in Monday's deadly accident off Southern Avenue and 59th Avenue in Phoenix were not wearing seat belts.

"We know that putting a child in a proper safety seat or booster seat, does save lives," Gorman said.

Twenty-nine child passengers died in Arizona car crashes in 2012, and most of them weren't buckled up, according to AAA Arizona.

For more information on obtaining a car seat for low-income families visit http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art46489.asp

Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

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