As you know I’m back in car seat mode after 15 years. Technology has improved and so have learnings about safety and best practices for safe road tripping. Below I’ve listed the Safety 1st’s expert tips and are print-out-fridge-worthy both for you and any family / sitters who watch the kids during the summer months.
And an adorable picture of my grandson, but you knew that was coming….
Travel Safety tips from Julie Vallese, Consumer Safety Expert for Safety 1st
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 75% of car seats on the road are installed incorrectly.
– The safest place to install a car seat is typically in the center of the rear seat.
– Check in with a local Child Passenger Safety Technician to ensure your child’s seat is installed correctly. You can visit a local police station, fire station, AAA office or Safe Kids Chapter for guidance.
– The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) advises parents to keep their toddlers in rear-facing car seats until age 2. It also advises that most children will need to ride in a belt-positioning booster seat until they have reached 4 feet 9 inches tall and are between 8 and 12 years of age.
– Don’t leave a child alone in the car. Hyperthermia is a severe form of heat stroke and last year 32 children died after being left or trapped in a hot vehicle. You can learn more about this issue and easy tips to prevent it here.
– Childproof the inside of the car and eliminate projectiles. Anything in the car that is not secured is a possible projectile – even a child’s toy, or a water bottle. In a crash, objects take on greater weight due to crash forces.
– Make sure unused shoulder belts are not in reach of children as they can pose strangulation risk.
– Car seats expire! You can find the expiration date on the back of the car seat. Also, another very important tip – once a car seat has been in a crash you should not use it, plastic can warp and materials can fray. To properly dispose of a car seat check with your local waste management facility to see if they recycle number 5 plastic.
Hope you have a safe summer traveling with your little ones.