Motor vehicle injuries are currently the leading cause of death for American Indian and Alaska Native children. The use of child safety seats has been proven to reduce child injury and death by 71% for infants and by 54% for toddlers (1-4 years old) in passenger cars. Booster seats reduce the risk of serious injury by 59% and seat belts reduce injury risk by 69%.
The Native CARS Study serves to improve rates of child safety seat use for American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) children in the Pacific Northwest and beyond.
Initially the study aimed to implement and test the effectiveness of community-led interventions
to improve the use of child passenger restraints in six Northwest tribes. In its current phase, the study aims to develop and facilitate the use of a dissemination platform that will translate the successful protocols, tools and intervention materials used by Native CARS tribal partners for use by other Tribes. It is intended that this dissemination platform, the Native CARS Atlas will serve as a blueprint for other Tribes to address child passenger safety concerns in tribal communities.