Osage Beach kids event educates parents on how to use car seats

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OSAGE BEACH - The sun wasn't the only thing shining on a cool Saturday morning - it was also the smile of many children during Lake Regional Hospital's "Lake Regional Cares for Kids" event.

The festival started at 9 a.m. and went until noon with as many as 250 people attending.

 Members of the Missouri State Highway Patrol, Osage Beach Police Department as well as other officials from the surrounding area brought their respective vehicles and accessories. 

Children toured ambulances, fire trucks, police cars, and even the hospital's medical helicopter. 

It wasn't all fun and games though, parents were also able to have their car seats inspected. Portia Swanson, who has a 3 year old daughter, was glad she had her car seat checked.

Her daughter's car seat had a recalled strap.

"Today I didn't know that my safety belt was recalled," Swanson said. "It's good to know and now I can get that fixed and my daughter will be taken care of."

Swanson said she'll call the belt's manufacturer, Graco, and the company will mail her a free replacement.

"I just put her in and then make sure that it's tight and I've always been told two fingers to fit in the straps there so every time I put her in I check that," she said. 

Osage Beach Police Department Sergeant Arlyne Page said it's dangerous if people don't get seats looked at. 

"It's neglectful for one not to place your child into a properly fit car seat," she said. "With all of the child safety seat instructors that are out there, there's absolutely no reason why a parent shouldn't be able to properly install their car seats." 

Page said she's realizes that some car seat instructions can be extremely confusing, but says the police department is there to help parents and others properly secure children.