. Buckle your seat belt, making sure the latch clicks firmly into place.
Adjust the lap belt so that it fits snugly across your hips and make sure the shoulder belt fits snugly across your chest and over your shoulder.
. Never wear your shoulder belt under your arm. In a collision, your upper body will pivot forward and your head will strike the vehicle interior. The belt will press into your abdomen and likely cause serious or even fatal injuries to internal organs.
. If you're pregnant, take extra care when adjusting your seat belt. Sit as upright as you can, and wear the lap belt under your abdomen and as low over the hips as possible.
. Bulky winter clothing or large body types can pose a particular risk. Always try to place the lap belt below the bottom edge or fold of a winter jacket or below the lowest part of your belly so that it sits closer to the lap than to the belly button.
. Air bags cushion the head as it moves forward or sideways after impact. However, they expand with explosive speed and open faster than the blink of an eye. As a result, a deploying air bag can cause injuries if you are not properly positioned or restrained.
. While most of these injuries consist of minor bruises and abrasions, some can be serious or even fatal. Reduce the chances of injury by wearing a properly adjusted seat belt, adjusting the vehicle's front seat as far back as possible to give the air bags room to inflate. The distance between the centre of your chest and the steering wheel should be at least 25 cm.
. If your vehicle has air bags, especially side air bags or curtains in the rear, keep the space between you and the air bag clear so that objects aren't pushed towards you when the air bag inflates.
. Children are protected by seats specifically designed for them. There are four stages to properly protect children, according to the child's weight and height - rear-facing infant seats, forward-facing child seats, booster seats, and seat belts. http://www.tc.gc.ca/roadsafety/tp/tp13511/menu.htm
Basic Guidelines on Positioning Child Restraints
. Avoid the dangers of a front air bag by always placing children, 12 or younger, in the rear seat in properly secured child restraints.
. Keep kids a safe distance from side air bags. Children who are leaning against a side air bag when it inflates are at risk of serious injury.
. Don't let toys, blankets or other objects get between your child and an air bag.
You can find more information and downloads about road safety at www.tc.gc.ca/hookedonroadsafety/awareness.htm.