Driving Safely with babies and children in the car
This article is a great refresher for parents about the various but vitally important driving tips for Driving Safely with babies and children in the car/
Be it a screaming baby, a tantruming toddler, or bickering siblings, it is very easy to get distracted and agitated and loose focus on what you should be paying 100% attention to, you actual driving.
Nearly all parents are probably guilty at one time or another for bending down, or turning around whilst driving so as to pick up a toy, drink or snack for our children. Then you have the other things that compromise your families safety whilst your are driving and these are answering mobile phones, texting while driving and changing c.d’s, radio stations, applying makeup etc..
Below are some very important safety tips for driving with kids and babies.
General Car Safety Around Kids & Tips For Safe Driving With Kids & Babies On Board
- Even when the engine is turned off, never ever leave kids in the car and the keys in the ignition, even if you are in your own driveway and running back into the house for just a minute.
- Never let kids roam around the inside of a car, especially when you are parked on an incline. Tragic and fatal accidents have happened when a child has accidentally released the handbrake.
- Do not turn around to pick things up or give things to your kids when driving. If you must, pull over, or at the very, least wait till you get to a red light and put on the handbrake before you reach around behind you.
- Never text while driving at anytime and this of course includes while driving children, again if you need to text pull over and park. If you must talk while driving, then use a hands free kit, but it is still safest to try to avoid using the phone even on hands free, as concentrating on what the person on the other end of the phone is saying, definitely lowers your concentration on the road.
- Put the child door locks on!!! Kids can easily open the door on a moving car. The same goes for the window locks, (if you have them in your car) only an adult should control the amount the windows goes up and down and not your children. Never let kids stick limbs or objects out of an open window.
- Make sure all child restraints are working properly and meet all the safety requirement by law. You should also have child restraints and baby seats fitted by a professional. A correctly fitted child restraint can make all the difference
- Make sure the child seats you are using are age, weight and height appropriate. See this article by Vic Roads about Choosing the right Child Restraint.
- Do not allow children to have sharp object, food or toys that could be dangerous if you stop suddenly. Or large toys or balloons that may block your vision when you drive.
- Never drink a hot beverage while driving with kids, if you have to stop suddenly your hot tea/coffee can easily spill over them and yourself.
- Make sure if you are driving with children and pets together, that the animals are tethered securely, in an appropriate pet harness, or cage, so they will not hurt either your kids, or themselves, if again you have to stop suddenly. It is still safer to have your pets with you in the front seat, still harnessed or caged securely, than to put a dog between young children that could accidentally antagonize or hurt it, causing your dog to jump, bark or snap at your children.
To find our even more about see Raising Children Network Staying Safe in the Car.
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