A small study done by The Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education at The University of California, San Francisco, "suggests that e-cigarettes don't actually help people to quit smoking." However, of the 949 smokers in the study, only 88 used e-cigarettes, causing the study's researchers to "admit that their findings should be viewed with some caution."
World Science reports "They also found that e-cigarette use was more commmon among women, younger adults and people with less education." Last year, the US Centers for Disease Control reported e-cigarette use more than doubled among U.S. middle and high school students from 2011-2012. The lack of solid research, potential youth market, and abundance of caution have had anti-tobacco activists and researchers pushing for a ban on advertising of e-cigarettes.
NPR has a recently story about "vaping" (using e-cigarettes) indoors and in the workplace.
If you smoke, have you been able to cut back your smoking or quit thanks to electronic cigarettes? If you do not smoke, does it bother you that others use e-cigarettes indoors?
Of course nobody thought anything of it, the people who died of it weren't around to have an opinion, and any survivors with first-hand experience are themselves a tiny minority.
Part of the problem here is that humans suck at evaluating rare risks, the math is not intuitive, so we under-rate the ones we don't experience first hand and over-rate the ones we do.
In this case it would be useful to track down the statistics behind the car-seat requirement instead of relying on personal anecdotes.
If the survivors (That is, siblings and parents) are such a tiny minority, that must mean the risk of what was once a nearly ubiquitous practice must have been minuscule.
There have been a few reviews of the deeply flawed research on car seats and their effect on safety such as this one (PDF) [uchicago.edu]. Among it's findings, most of the studies compare children in car seats to completely unrestrained children. The case of a child using a seatbelt but no child seat is ignored. That considerably reduces the NHTSA of 6000 lives saved between 1975 and 2003.
That's often the problem, too many studies more or less designed so that they can't help but confirm the author's bias flood the field.
It reminds me of air bags and their many unintended consequences such as killing a child in what would otherwise be an injury free fender bender. That's how we reach the grim truth that airbags kill more children than school shootings.