Are you trying to figure out how to keep kids safe in the car? Read this article to learn more about kids in car accidents and how they can be kept safe.
Car accidents are a fact of life. Thankfully, most of us will never experience more than a minor fender bender.
However, the statistics surrounding kids in car accidents might shock you. In 2017, 675 children 12 and under died in vehicle collisions – and 116,000 were injured.
While we cannot prevent every accident, we can help prevent child injuries as a result of car crashes. The good news is those extra measures are straightforward – and sometimes they’re a legal requirement.
Here’s how we can all keep kids safer in the car.
- Avoid Eating in the Car
We spend so much of our lives in our cars that finding ourselves stuck in traffic when snack time rolls around is inevitable. Eating in the car can be dangerous – and not just because it’s a distraction.
Bumps, accidents, and just being a kid can all increase your child’s risk of choking. And if you’re in the driver’s seat, you may not notice, or it may not be safe to stop immediately and help them.
Ideally, you should snack before leaving the driveway, and if you’re on a long trip, stop at a rest area before pulling out the crackers. By limiting the food you eat in the car, you can not only prevent accidents but you can also stop those accidents happen from causing the kids to choke.
- Install the Right Car Seat
According to New York law, kids under 4 must travel in a child safety seat on every single trip. It’s essential to make sure they are secure even when you’re just going down the road.
However, it’s equally important to make sure they are in a car seat that suits them. Your car seat should match your child’s age and weight, and you should make sure it’s also compatible with your vehicle model.
For extra protection, keep your kids in a booster seat until they’re eight. Once they’re grown enough to enjoy more protection from the seatbelt alone, make sure they make a habit of buckling up before they do anything else.
- Lock the Car When You’re Not Inside
One of the most dangerous times for kids isn’t when you’re flying down the highway. It’s when you leave your car parked in the driveway and they get inside the car to play.
If you’re not in the car, you should always lock it, even if you’re outside with the kids. Not only does it prevent kids from playing with the controls, but 28% of all child vehicular heatstroke deaths happen when kids play in unattended vehicles.
Minimize the Risk of Kids in Car Accidents
The last thing anyone wants is to find themselves in an accident, but the stakes are even higher when kids are in the car.
Although we can’t predict what’s coming around the next bend, we can do everything to ensure we minimize injuries to kids in car accidents. Keeping kids buckled up, putting them in the right car seat, and reducing risks like choking and heat stroke are the essential components of car safety.
Are you looking for more great content? Head over to our On the Road archive for more interesting reads.