TIFTON — The Tift County Sheriff’s Office and the Tift County Health Department were awarded the 2020 Seat Mini-Grant by the Georgia Department of Public Health, Injury Prevention Program, according to a press release.

 Through the mini-grant, the Tift County Sheriff’s Office and the Tift County Health Department work together to provide car seats and education to financially eligible families in Tift County, the release states. This program is funded by the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety to help ensure Georgia’s children are safe while riding in motor vehicles.

Since 2007, the education, car seats and booster seats provided through the mini-grant prevented serious injury or death and saved over 300 of Georgia’s children who were involved in crashes, the release states.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, car seats reduce fatal injuries by 71 percent among infants and by 54 percent among children ages 1 to 4 years in passenger cars. Car seats offer the best protection for children in the event of a crash, and they are most effective when installed and used correctly. Nearly three out of every four car seats are not used properly, placing children at unnecessary risk.

“It’s our responsibility to keep our children safe,” said Tift County Sheriff Gene Scarbrough in the release. “The car seat mini-grant is a great opportunity to help our community and help protect our children from serious injuries or death in motor vehicle crashes.”

In Tift County, the Tift County Sheriff’s Office and the Tift County Health Department educates parents and caregivers on how to properly install and use car seats, offers car seat inspections and provides car seats and booster seats to financially eligible families. Through the car seat mini-grant, agencies supporting more than 120 counties are working to keep Georgia’s children safe. These programs help families get their children buckled up right, every trip, every time.

For more information about the Tift County car seat program, contact the Tift County Sheriff’s Office at 229-388-6021 or the Tift County Health Department at 229-386-8373.

For more information regarding other counties involved in the program, please contact the Georgia Department of Public Health’s Child Occupant Safety Project via email at injury@dph.ga.gov or by calling 404-463-1487.

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