Angela Brown was driving home from the dentist one February afternoon with her two babies in the back seat. When her car slammed head-on into a tree, it flipped on impact. To make matters worse, the tree snapped, crushing the vehicle and trapping its passengers inside.
When Brown awoke, her daughters — whom she affectionately nicknamed Miss 1 and Miss 2 — were screaming. Miss 1, who was just a little under a year old, was seated in a rear-facing car seat had no visible injuries.
Miss 2, who was almost 2-years-old at the time, was buckled into a forward-facing car seat, had a “large laceration on her forehead.”
PROOF REAR FACING FOR AS LONG AS POSSIBLE IS IMPORTANT!! I write this sitting next to my nearly 2 year old (she is…
After the impact, Brown and her injured daughter were flown to the hospital, where doctors discovered:
[S]he had broken her c2 c3 and tore all her ligaments in her c1. She was one of the youngest to be fitted with a Halo Brace…
The uninjured daughter, Miss 1, came away with only a small bruise on her shoulder. On the other hand, doctors told Brown and her husband that children with injuries to the degree Miss 2 suffered “don’t normally make it.”
So as you can see two children in the same car crash restrained properly one with life threatening injuries and the other with non[e].
The Parenting website reported that the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has not changed its policy that recommends that parents:
[K]eep toddlers in rear-facing car seats until age two, or until they exceed the height or weight limit for the car seat, which can be found on the back of the seat.
While many parents choose to make the switch to forward-facing car seats immediately after their tot’s first birthday, the AAP encourages them to stay rear-facing for as long as possible.Screenshot/Healthy Children
Dr. Dennis Durbin from the Center for Injury Research and Prevention at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia explained:
“A rear-facing child safety seat does a better job of supporting the head, neck and spine of infants and toddlers in a crash, because it distributes the force of the collision over the entire body.”
In fact, a 2007 study found that children under age two are 75 percent less likely to die if they are seated in a rear-facing seat.
Brown’s girls are currently both over 2-years-old now, but she is in no rush to switch them to a forward-facing car seat. She wrote:
I was always unsure about when turning my babies around but after our crash and the hard evidence we are presented with I will forever rearward face my babies as long as I possibly can.
She concluded with the warning:
“Don’t make the same mistake as I did. It could cost you your babies life.”