Ask any seasoned parents and they’ll tell you traveling with their kids is fun and sometimes the highlight of their day. That little bundle of joy is learning so much about the world and growing up so fast that some much needed, one and one time in the car can be a precious commodity. And if you want to be safe and learn a few car safety tips for traveling with kids, well that’s a great start.
Most new parents might be a little nervous about traveling with their children. As a new parent, you’re suddenly aware of all the dangers around your child. The world can come into focus in a very different way after having kids. Maybe your parents were right to be so concerned about you all the time after all! And now you’re seeing the world a little more from their perspective.
There is no denying that you need to take extra precautions when traveling with your children in the car. It is crucial to take every necessary step to ensure that your child is safe throughout the journey. But there’s no need to worry. You and your child can increase your safety with a few little additions and behavior changes.
Although many parents are well aware of the necessary tips to follow, it is always a good idea to go through them again to ensure your child’s maximum safety. Parents need to be vigilant when it comes to car safety for kids. Let’s take a look at some of the top car safety tips every parent should follow:
Choose The Appropriate Car Seat
When using a car seat for your child, you must ensure that you purchased the right seat and that you’ve followed all the manufacturer’s recommendations laid out according to your child’s weight, height, and age. Each seat will come with a set of instructions that you can use to ensure you install the seat correctly. If you’re a visual learner, a quick YouTube video tutorial may be the best way to follow the directions effectively.
Throw Away Old Car Seats
Although car seats are essential for your children when traveling, old car seats will do more harm than good. Parents on a budget may have just winced slightly, but the risks associated with old car seats far outweigh the potential savings. If you are pulling out the old car seat from a previous child, or using a preowned car seat gifted from a family member, you could be sacrificing safety for savings. If you happen to have an older car seat, especially one previously involved in an accident, it’s time to throw it away. A broken or very old car seat can lead to serious injury in case of an accident.
It is highly recommended to use a booster seat until your child is old enough to use the car’s seat belt. Height and weight are a factor here. If your toddler is near 4 feet 9 inches tall and 8 to 12 years old, they should be in a booster. Boosters give your children maximum safety and security in the event of an accident.
Keep Your Kids In The Back Seat
When it comes to the safety of your children, there is no place more secure than the middle of the back seat. Airbags are specifically designed for adults, and they can exert too much force on a child during a collision. You must never place a rear-facing car seat in your vehicle’s front seat with passenger-side airbags. If your child has to sit in the front seat, make sure you push the seat as far back as possible. So throw the old “shotgun” rule out and keep the kids in the back until they are 13-years-old.
Seek Professional Help
It is never a bad idea to get help from an expert when it comes to the safety of your child. CPS or certified child passenger technicians can help you install your car seat properly and guide you if you have not installed the car seat correctly. According to statistics, 73% of car seats are not installed properly and are generally not secured to the vehicle tightly enough. So ask around. Rather take the time to be temporarily unsure, but ultimately safe.
Never Leave Your Child Alone In The Car
Even if you are going to run into the store for just two minutes, never leave your child unattended in the vehicle. Children left unsupervised in the car are at significant risk of abduction, dehydration, injury, or even death. Even if the air conditioning is running, never leave your children alone in the car, as they can easily unbuckle their seat belts and get caught in a power window or set the car in motion.
Explain The Importance Of Wearing A Seatbelt
Children don’t have the ability to acknowledge the safety rules that are specifically made to protect them. And hey, sometimes they can be a little stubborn too. Which is why it’s so extremely important to not just buckle up kids but to also sit them down and explain why it is crucial that they wear a seatbelt and how it can protect them in case of an accident. If you have to explain the reasons for wearing a seatbelt to your child more than a few times, it may be time to sit down and have a serious conversation.
Another way to instill the importance of wearing a seatbelt is by setting a good example of yourself. When your children see you fasten your seat belt before starting any trip, your kids are more likely to follow suit.
Power Windows Are Dangerous
Oh boy, everything can be a toy driving with kids, and unfortunately, there are so many mechanisms in a car that can be extremely dangerous. Always tell your children to never stick their faces and hands out of an open power window. If someone accidentally closes them, it can lead to serious injury as these windows boast massive power.
Being conscious of the potential dangers that may come your way on and off the road will help create a safer environment when driving with kids.
Contact Us For All Your Legal Needs
These were some tips concerning road safety for kids. If your child has been injured due to a second party’s negligence, you can contact a car accident attorney to sue for the damages. Our team of experienced legal professionals will offer you the best counsel for your case.