Is your Baby Safe Now?

By: david hoffman

Okay. You have done your homework. You diligently researched and bought a good carseat for your child, followed the installation recommendations word-by-word, had the carseat installation inspected by the police, and learned how to properly strapped in your baby in the carrier.

So your baby should be pretty safe in the car, right?

Safer? Yes. Safest? Maybe. What you have done is make sure everything regarding the childseat is proper, which is very important. But it is equally important to consider the condition in the car and your mental state.

Observe the following points and your child will be a lot safer while riding with you!

1. Don't leave your baby in the car unattended

Sometimes caring parents do forget, especially when tired. Sometimes parents are just lazy, thinking they'll be back in a couple of minutes. When the baby is not with a parent, all of these situations have contributed to fatalities not from a collision:

* stolen cars
* brake failure
* overheating

Make it a habit to always look behind you when you leave the car. As for the other parent not driving the baby, make it a habit to call for every drop-off and pick-up.

2. Don't get a carseat mirror

Driving requires your full attention. You don't want to be driving 65 mph and checking your baby at the same time. You certainly don't need a carseat mirror to help you do that!

If your baby is crying hysterically, you have to find a safe location, park your car, and check.

3. Don't drive while you are not well

That seems almost obvious, but still many parents drive when they are not well or don't have enough sleep.

* Plan your day ahead - go to sleep early, and don't drink coffee or alcoholic beverages before going to bed.
* Give yourself some rest - take a 10 minute rest before leaving the office.

4. Do put away dangerous objects

When a collision happens, objects will fly around. That is why you wear a seatbelt, and your baby is in the carseat. What about that cellphone? What about the laptop? Yes, they do fly around too.

So put away stuff that you don't need while driving. That means laptop computers, cellphones (you shouldn't be talking in your car anyway!), cameras, backpacks, bottled waters, and coffee! Put them in the back of the trunk, inside compartments, or backseat pockets.

5. Do put your baby carrier / stroller between yourself and your car

Sometimes you need to put down your baby (in a carrier or a stroller), to open car door or to load groceries. Please put your baby between yourself and your car.

Other people driving may not see your baby carrier lying on the ground, but they certainly would see you. Putting your baby between yourself and your car would create a visible barrier for other drivers to steer clear of.

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