Many parents go to great lengths to childproof their home to keep their children safe from harm. Aside from the home, it is also important for parents to childproof their car to protect children from potential hazards inside the vehicle.
Ask yourself this question, are you sure your child is safe when hitting the road? There should never be gray areas when it comes to the safety of a child. Here are some child safety measures that can prevent injury and save your child’s life.
Take the time to choose the right car seat for your child. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is very strict about child restraint safety, particularly booster seats and weight-based child restraints. Consult your state’s car seat laws for guidance in purchasing a car seat.
Ensure your child’s safety on the road by choosing the car seat that best suits his age, height and weight. Getting the right seat can help reduce the risk of death or injury from a collision. Avoid buying a second-hand or used one. Don’t trade security for a bargain. It is recommended that you purchase a new seat to ensure that it has passed the current safety tests. A new one also gives the consumer the advantage of having a manufacturer’s warranty. Follow the manual for correct installation.
Always fasten your seat belt for safety. Before leaving home, it is advisable to secure child safety seats, especially if they have come loose. Teach your child how to buckle the booster seat under your supervision. Check if the booster seat is secure before exiting. Remember that unused shoulder belts are potentially dangerous to a child due to the risk of strangulation. Keep them out of the reach of your child.
Take advantage of the child-proof safety locks on your car. Most automobiles, especially newer models, sold in the United States are equipped with a child-resistant lock. Take advantage of this safety feature to prevent young children, especially active toddlers, from getting out of the car inappropriately, especially while the vehicle is in motion. Child-resistant safety locks are usually activated by the driver. Consult your owner’s manual for proper instructions.
Note that this security feature has a downside. If your child accidentally locks himself inside or if you accidentally lock the keys in the car with your child, your child will not be able to open the door next to him. It is advisable to have a spare key on hand in case this type of situation occurs. Without a replacement key, you may need to call the police or a professional mechanic to lock your car door lock.
Remove potentially dangerous and loose items from your car. It is strongly recommended that you keep choking hazard items, such as loose change and other small items that your child could accidentally put in the mouth, out of reach. Remove sharp things that could fly or fall directly on your child if the brakes are suddenly applied. Remove things that can poison your child, such as car fluids, from inside the car.