Mom Shares Story Of Sons Heartbreaking Death To Educate Others On Car Seat Safety

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Installing car seats is not the easiest thing to do. So when your child should move from rear to front facing, and when to move your child to a booster seat based on their height and weight can be a stressful decision. It’s important decisions though as it can literally mean the difference between life and death.

Christine Miller, of Growing Humans has shared the heartbreaking story of her son, Kyle, who died in a car accident 12 years ago this month. The Mom is sharing his story because, she says, she’s made it her life’s mission to educate others on the dangers of booster seats, if used too soon.

Miller thinks that Kyle’s death was preventable had she put him in a 5-point harness instead of a booster, and she wants to warn others against making that same mistake. Her story was shared on the car seat safety page Car Seat Consultants, where she writes, “12 years ago today was the last time I saw this beautiful smile, kissed his sweet face or felt his little arms wrap around my neck. I had no idea that morning with him would be the last time I heard his adorable laugh and sweet voice call me mommy.”

She also shared a video of Kyle’s short life, where she gives details that her son died after their minivan was struck by another car that ran a red light. The boy was in a booster seat, which Miller thought was the correct car seat for her son at his weight of 40 pounds.

He was thrown from the van and died on impact.

Losing Kyle was like being plunged straight into hell, a pain and agony beyond description. If the scars on my heart were visible, people would gasp every time they saw me,” Miller says. “Had I just known about the dangers of booster seats for toddlers, had somebody warned me, I would have put him in a 5-point harness car seat…and that simple difference would have changed everything. It would have saved his life,” Miller explains.

Car accidents are the #1 killer of children, and statistics show that 80-90% of car seats are installed or used incorrectly,” Miller explains. “Car seat safety is not a “parenting choice,” it’s a matter of physics and facts.”

So when is the right time to move your child into a booster seat? If you can answer “Yes” to ALL the statements below, your child is safe to use a booster:

  • There is a shoulder AND lap belt (boosters need shoulder belts)
  • the child is at least 40 pounds
  • the child is at least 4 years old and
  • the child can sit properly the entire trip without leaning forward, slouching, sitting on their knees, playing with the shoulder belt.

Also, even if your child is older than 4 but still fits into a 5-point harness car seat, leave him or her there.

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