Firefighters to hold car seat safety check event.

Shawnee firefighters, in an ongoing effort to reduce deaths and injuries to children, will sponsor a child passenger car seat event on Saturday, Dec. 14, complete with Sparky the Fire Dog and Shawnee’s Fire Prevention clowns.

The Shawnee Fire Department, along with Safe Kids Oklahoma, will begin the event at 10 a.m. at Station No. 3, located at 306 E. MacArthur. The event concludes at 2 p.m.

Firefighters will provide fee car seat installation sessions for parents and caregivers. Firefighters conduct these regular events to help ensure all children are buckled up correctly and that car seats are properly installed.

Surveys show that only 80 percent of all children in Oklahoma are buckled up, and of those, more than 80 percent are not restrained safely.

Even though child passenger safety has evolved over the past decade, motor vehicle crashes continue to be the leading cause of death for children ages 4 and older.

During the event, Shawnee fire clowns, along with Sparky the Fire Dog, will be there to entertain children.

Parents and caregivers will be taught by nationally certified child passenger safety technicians on how to properly secure their child in the vehicle.

A limited number of car seats also will be available for eligible family while supplies last. To quality, a caregiver must be the legal guardian of the child and show proof of government aid, such as food stamps, WIC or Medicaid.

Children also must be present or the mother must be within eight weeks of the due date.

Refreshments also will be provided during the event.