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Study Finds Many Parents Aren't Buckling Up Their Kids

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- A new child safety study finds one in four parent drivers admits to not always properly buckling up a child.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- A new child safety study finds one in four parent drivers admits to not always properly buckling up a child.

Parents in the Ozarks, who spoke with KOLR10 News on Monday, said they always put their kids in a seat belt, but the numbers show a different and dangerous trend.

"We always make sure that she's buckled up," says dad Chris Remulla as he picks up his daughter from daycare. He doesn't take any chances, even with a short drive home. "When I was younger, when I was in college, I had a car accident myself, so I know it can happen any time."

But a new study finds not every parent is as vigilant. One in four parents surveyed online by Safe Kids Worldwide admitted to not always using a seat belt for their kids.

Even if parents have a properly installed car seat, the problem now is that many of them are not taking the time for the very last step: buckling up.

"That was a big shock," says Daphne Greenlee, local Safe Kids Springfield coordinator at Mercy Hospital. "A lot of times it's just convenience. It's easier if we're just running down the road and they don't realize the severity of injuries, even in a 30 mile-per-hour crash."

She says that's concerning because the majority of accidents happen within ten miles of home.

"They're not on our interstates; they're not on our state highways."

Hallie McCain has a 6-year-old daughter, "and there is no way in the world I would ever go anywhere without her being in a car seat," she says. She agrees with dad Chris Remulla that no trip is ever short enough to not buckle up.

"It's worth it. I mean, what if all of a sudden you're going up to a four-way stop and someone blows right through it? Even though you're just going to the other side of that four-way stop, you've been hit now with a child without a seatbelt on."

Part of Child Passenger Safety Week is a free car seat check taking place Saturday in Nixa.
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