Spaces open for car seat training

Plans are in place to bring an instructor to town to train a new batch of technicians

Salmon Arm resident Selina Metcalfe announced last summer that after three years  she could no longer be the go-to volunteer for car seat questions and seat checks.

Plans are in place to bring an instructor to town to train a new batch of technicians who could take on this much-needed service for Salmon Arm and surrounding areas.

The valuable service that Metcalfe has provided for free is no longer viable or practical for one busy mom to take on alone, and community support and assistance is now requested to fill the void for local families.

A properly selected, installed, and used car or booster seat reduces death and serious injury by 70-90 per cent.

In theory it’s so easy to prevent the number one cause of death of our children – car crashes – yet the vast majority of seats are inappropriate for the child, installed incorrectly, or not used properly.  Instructor Jen Shapka, with the Child Passenger Safety Association of Canada, has seen three perfect seats in the hundreds she’s checked.  That rate of misuse is not acceptable, and together with other like-minded technicians, instructors, and advocates, has been working hard to change that.

Shapka is coming to Salmon Arm from Vancouver Island to teach a car seat technician (CRST) training course to certify 10 new technicians. Upon successful completion Salmon Arm and area will have an invaluable local resource when it comes to the safety of their children in the form of qualified, certified technicians.

If you know of a community group or service that would benefit from having a trained CRST on hand, please tell them how important this is to you, and ask them to send someone for training.  If you are interested in being a local resource yourself, any interested person is welcome to sign up.

The course is 2.5 days long and is scheduled to run Nov. 23 to 25, culminating in a free public seat check event to give the new technicians hands-on experience and local families access to quality help.

The cost is $175 and includes all materials, certification fees, and personal liability insurance upon completion.  Many thanks to Jacobson Ford for providing a classroom and clinic location.  For more information, contact Jen Shapka at


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