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Car seat checks really do help save lives


SIOUX FALLS, SD (KELO-AM) Sioux Falls Fire Rescue recently received a thank-you letter from a grateful mother who acknowledged that her children were alive in part because of a car seat check at Fire Station 3.

Rebecca Barefoot was driving to work on January 3, 2014, when she hit ice while changing lanes on Interstate 90. She rolled her husband’s truck several times, totaling the vehicle. However, she and her two children with her in the truck, Cale, age 2, and Cole, age 1, remained safe.

“Both of my babies remained snug in their seats during the entire episode, and neither received so much as a scratch, even though the windows all around them shattered,” says Rebecca.

About two months earlier, Sioux Falls Fire Rescue installed two free car seats into Rebecca’s husband’s truck and ensured the seats were the right size for each toddler.

“Yes, we use our seat belts every time and make sure they’re positioned correctly,” said Rebecca’s letter to the firefighters and car seat technicians. “Yes, I believe God had His hand over us as the vehicle rolled and kept us from harm. Most of all, yes, I firmly believe y’all are angels for making sure my boys’ car seats were installed correctly, thereby ensuring their safety and saving their lives.”

“Oftentimes we don’t get to hear the outcome of our efforts to help keep people safe,” says Fire Rescue Chief Jim Sideras. “Letters like Rebecca’s remind us that the little things do matter, like ensuring your child’s car seat is properly installed.”

Sioux Falls Fire Rescue provides car seat installation and checks each Saturday from 9 to 11 a.m. at Fire Station 3, 2820 South Minnesota Avenue. No appointment is necessary.