While vehicles are a necessary part of our lives, they are also hazardous to children. And while you may be generally safe, children are vulnerable and rely on adult supervision when riding as passengers.
Car safety requires following certain procedures, and when you don’t observe them, it’s the child sitting in the passenger seat who’s most likely to suffer injuries and fatalities. A slight misstep could have disastrous consequences.
Still, it’s not impossible to protect your young ones with regard to vehicles. These car safety tips can help keep your child safe:
1. Inspect the Car
Taking a minute to check your car before and after a drive is crucial when you have young kids around. A child playing near the car could play hide and seek with you without your knowledge and hide behind or underneath the car.
After a drive, recheck the car, ensuring your child has followed you out of the vehicle and is locked. Many parents forget they have a child in the back seat.
Forgetting children inside locked cars has proven to be a fatal error. Every year, about 30 children below the age of 1 die of heatstroke inside locked cars.
2. Use Proper Child Restraints
The first step to keeping your child secure inside the car is using proper child restraint seats appropriate for their age. Many parents have difficulties understanding how the child restraint system works.
If you’re not sure what seat you need, ask for more information before buying, as that seat can save your child’s life.
The other challenge parents face is installing CRS, as many end up fitting the devices incorrectly or improperly strapping their children. Educate yourself about the installation process before driving with a child.
3. Impose a Safety Belt Rule
While you’re driving, your child can easily slip out of their seat belt. You can’t allow yourself to be distracted, worrying about whether your child is unbuckling their restraint all over again.
Taking your focus off the road is dangerous, and so is a child getting out of their seat belt.
You have to educate your child about not using seat belts. Furthermore, enforce the rule that everyone buckles up inside the car. Make it clear that getting out of the restraints is not acceptable.
4. Engage Child Locks
The minute you buckle your child in, engage the child safety locks before driving off. When the locks are activated, they prevent anyone from opening the rear doors.
Child safety locks are crucial because children are generally restless and will begin fiddling with things around them. You don’t want them to accidentally open the door when the car is moving.
5. Observe Traffic Rules
It’s common for people to dismiss certain traffic rules, but they are in place to keep everyone safe on the road. You can’t afford to be negligent if you have a child in the car.
If you like to step on the gas quite a bit, stay on the speed limit. Put a distance between you and the vehicle in front of you, and ensure you’re aware of what’s happening in your surroundings.
Remember, the more aware you are, the better your chances of avoiding a reckless driver in time.
It’s your responsibility to do all you can to safeguard the child in your car in case of an accident. And since you’re not the at-fault party, seeking compensation for damages becomes easier. You’ll probably need whatever you can get to help offset you and your loved one’s medical bills.
JT Legal Group strongly recommends hiring a car accident attorney shortly after surviving an accident.
6. Locked Car Escape
Statistics show that children are often forgotten in the backseats when adults are distracted. An unfortunate error that could be devastating if the adult fails to remember in time.
You should teach your kids various ways of escaping if they’re ever trapped inside a car. Some of the things children should learn are:
- How to get into the front seats and try the front doors as they don’t have child locks
- How to turn on the lights
- How to hock to attract attention
- How to make themselves visible
Kids are vulnerable inside vehicles, but you can keep them safe if you stick to safety procedures. Remember, kids can also contribute to their safety inside cars. You just have to teach them the basic practices and make it a habit.