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News

The Truth About “True” Lock-Offs

A few years ago, SRN reported on an emerging phenomenon: CRs with features that looked and acted like lock-offs but weren’t.

Since then, these features have become more common. Nowadays, CPSTs who see anything that looks like a lock-off ask, “Is that a true lock-off?” While a mechanism that functions as a lock-off must be a “true,” authentic lock-off, “true lock-off” has become part of the CPST vernacular when wondering whether a CR part that appears to be a lock-off actually is one.

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Lock-Offs and Their Look-Alikes

It’s important for CPSTs to understand what is (and isn’t) a lock-off

Until 1996, CR installation with a lap-shoulder belt nearly always required using a locking clip to hold the belt tight. This was often difficult (or altogether overlooked), so it was a relief when other solutions came along.

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A CPS Team’s NDCF Journey Continues

Part 4 of a 4-part series. This article appeared as an editorial by Denise Donaldson and is followed by links to part 1, 2, and 3 of this series, information about the steps she took to prepare her checkup-event team and use the NDCF at checkup events.

Articles in a few of the past SRN issues have covered editor Denise Donaldson’s Seattle-area team as it transitioned to using the National Digital Car Seat Check Form (NDCF). This report provides an update on hardware and basic troubleshooting.

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For Most of the World’s Children, CPS a Work in Progress

Imagine a world in which some CRs offer LATCH or seat belt installation mode, but not both options. Where vehicles don’t have a standardized lockability requirement, so, unless the CR has a lock-off, a locking clip is necessary for seat belt installations. And where many CRs with lock-off functionality require a seat belt that’s so long it often can’t be used.

In fact, you are imagining the world—as a whole—that we live in today! And that’s just considering the jumble of confusing CR/vehicle matchups in countries where CRs are available and used. In many, many countries, CRs are scarcely on the radar.

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Insights From a Team Adopting the NDCF, Part 3: Things Get Real

Part 3 of a 4-part series. At the end of this article, you'll find links to parts 1, 2 and 4 of this series, which include an editorial by Denise Donaldson about why her team is adopting the NDCF and information about the steps she took to prepare her checkup-event team.

After preparing over the winter to use the NDCF, my Car Safe Kids staffers eagerly jumped in with both feet during our first checkup events of 2022, held at Seattle-area hospitals on March 5, March 26, and April 9.

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Insights From a Team Adopting the NDCF, Part 2

Part 2 of a 4-part series. This article is followed by links to part 1, 3, and 4 of this series, an editorial by Denise Donaldson about why her team is adopting the NDCF and information about the steps she took to use the NDCF at checkup events.

Here are the first steps taken by the Car Safe Kids team in the Seattle area to begin using the NDCF.

An annual winter hiatus provided an ideal opportunity for my CPS team, Car Safe Kids, to do some preparation and training before adopting the NDCF in 2022. For readers who are also considering this process, here are the steps I’ve taken so far:

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Transition to NDCF to Energize CPS Data

Part 1 of a 4-part series. This article appeared as an editorial by Denise Donaldson and is followed by links to part 2, 3, and 4 of this series, information about the steps she took to prepare her checkup-event team and use the NDCF at checkup events.

Since the mid-90s, I’ve run a CPS program based in the Seattle area. My team and I have logged thousands of seat checks, and after each checkup event, I let the team and our host agency know our totals—how many checks overall, how many for expectant parents, rear- versus forward-facing, and so on. Then, at year-end, I calculate annual and cumulative figures of our efforts.
These objective reflections of our work give us useful perspective and can be energizing. But lately, a sad truth has dawned on me: We have lazy data!

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