Danger: Your Kids Are Alone in the Car

Posted by Jo Ann Schlicker on June 04, 2015

Cars are the handiest thing every invented. They allow us to travel quickly from one place to another. We conduct the errands of life, go to work, and reach fun places easily. Headlines on the news remind us that cars are also deadly, especially to children. We need constant vigilance to keep our children safe in a car.

Hot cars

Summer is almost here and the heat is increasing. Sometimes people leave a baby or small child in a car. They are just running in to get something at the store or running a quick errand and think it is easier just to let him sit in his seat. Sometimes, a parent may even forget that a child is in the car and go into work or home to sleep.

Thirty-eight of these children die each year from heat stroke. Many more sustain injuries. Many times a year, bystanders get involved and smash a window to remove the child from the car or call the police. Moments count.

Always take your child with you when you exit the car. Keep a plush pet in his car seat when he is not in the car and put it in the front seat to remind you that he is in the car.

Kidnapping

Recently, a grandma in Florida exited her car to fill it with gas. Her two small grandchildren slept inside. She kept the car running and went in to pay for her gas. A man jumped into the car and took off. We heard her frantic 911 call on the news. The cops found the car abandoned with the sleeping children safe inside.

This kind of thing happens more often than you care to think about. Kidnapping of infants or children in a car can turn out badly. This grandma should not have left the keys in the ignition.

Accidents

Accidents happen even to safe drivers.

We can increase our child’s safety by taking a few extra precautions. Young children and babies need to be in car seats. According to government statistics in the USA, rear facing car seats in the back seat reduce infant deaths by 71%.  Putting older children in booster seats reduces their death risk by 54%. Seat belts reduce injury for children ages four to eight by 45%.

Your best bet is to get car seats and booster seats for your children. Learn which ones your kids need, install them properly and use them correctly and consistently. Always insist on children being securely protected in the car.

Statistics are just numbers. Even one child death is too many if it is a child you love. Enjoy the summer with its ease of travel. Remember to protect your children from car danger. It may be expensive and cumbersome at times, but your child is worth it.