As the holiday season begins, many of us will be traveling to see relatives and family we haven’t seen much this year. Our kids will be excited and eager to get to see grandparents and cousins and friends again. This means that, on top of the usual dangers on the road, there will be distractions in the car as well.
This month is Child Protection Safety Month. We’ll be going over some of the most common safety tips and things to watch for when driving with kids in your car.
Buckle them all in. NHTSA data shows that more than half of teenagers who died in crashes weren’t wearing a seat belt, and that car crashes are the leading cause of death in teens. Make sure every teen, child, and infant is properly secured. Kids under 13 should always ride in the rear, with appropriate child seats and boosters for kids from 0 - 11.
Secure everything. Think of all the innocuous items you might have in the rear portion of your car right now: golf balls, jumper cables, books… imagine for a moment how the centrifugal force of a crash will weaponize these simple objects into child-killing ones. Don’t stack objects in a way that could send them flying at your family’s head in a crash.
Exercise good judgment. Emergencies come up and sometimes children can express needs during a trip that force us to replan our journey. Don’t text and drive. Pull over and park safely if you want to make a text message about an issue. Do not let yourself be distracted by music, the kids, or your phone.
Don’t leave children unattended in a car. What seems like a five-minute diversion can take longer, leaving a child exposed to dangerous levels of heat or cold. Kids are often hit when playing in parking lots around cars, so be sure to keep an eye for kids when you reverse out, too.
By being cautious, attentive, and safety-minded with your children and others you may encounter, you can help to make sure they survive the trip you’re taking! We hope that these simple tips and tricks to protecting kids when you drive will help you now and later on down the road. For any of your auto repair or preventive maintenance needs, Cartec Automotive Services is here to help! To take advantage of our complimentary complete maintenance and safety check, schedule an appointment with Cartec Automotive Services. You’ll be glad you did!