When you have a child, their traveling safety becomes your responsibility and a car seat should be one of your first purchases to ensure child travel safety.
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Safety Tip 1: Car Seat
Jeff Osborne, Head of Gumtree SA Automative explains the importance of the choosing the right car seat to ensure child travel safety:
Research indicates that a correctly fitted, safe car seat reduces the chances of your baby dying in an accident by as much as 70%. For a toddler that number is just over 50%.
Here’s a helpful guide from HealthyChildren.org:
Car seats and proper restraint is essential for child travel safety, find out more HERE.
Safety Tip 2: Avoid Driver Distraction
When you’re operating a vehicle, your full attention is required. So keeping your child well-behaved in the car is essential.
Make sure you’re not distracted by your child while driving. To ensure child travel safety and avoid driver distraction make sure your child is comfortable but at the same time secured in a car seat or with a safety belt depending on their age. It’s important that your child is cool or warm depending on the season and either taking a nap or busy with a driving-safe activity. These activities could include playing with a soft toy, smartphone or tablet or perhaps a car sing along. Avoid snacks and small toys as kids could choke.
It’s also a good idea to drive at times your child is likely to take a nap as this will leave you to your main job – to get everyone safely to your destination.
Install a baby mirror and mount it under the existing rear-view mirror or on your sun visor and angle it so you can keep an eye on the back seat without having to turn your head to the back.
Safety Tip 3: Emergency Child Travel Safety
When you’re traveling with a child it’s always a good idea to be prepared for anything. An important child travel safety measure is to have an emergency medical kit in your car. This kit should contain essential medication like asthma inhalers, antihistamine, painkillers, disinfectant, insulin for diabetic children, etc. Your emergency medical kit should also have stuff like plasters, bandages, sunscreen, bug repellant, etc.
Ensure that your emergency medical kit isn’t in your child’s reach, but it’s still easily accessible in emergency situations.
Safety Tip 4: General Car Checks
Ensure that you do your usual pre-travel car checks like ensuring that all the lights work, tyre pressure is good, the tank is filled up with fuel and your vehicle maintenance is up to date. Your child travel safety concerns should always come first, so be sure to travel in a vehicle that is roadworthy and safe for child travel – a sportscar is for instance not a suitable vehicle for child travel safety.
Safety Tip 5: Be Prepared
The best child travel safety tip is to be as prepared as you possibly can. Ensure that you have a baby bag with diapers, formula, and all other essentials packed if you’re traveling with a toddler or infant.
As a general child travel safety tip always have favourite snacks, drinks and a ton of water on hand. Hunger can turn tots into tantrum monsters, so be sure to feed children before long journeys and regularly stop to hydrate them and yourself and replenish your nutritional needs. Remember to avoid feeding children while driving as this is a choking hazard and driver distraction.
Do you have any child travel safety tips that we might have missed? Drop us a comment and let us know what essential child travel safety rituals you follow.