It is just as important to childproof the interior of your car as it is to childproof the interior of your house. There are many potential dangers inside your car that could harm your child if the car is not adequately childproofed.
Some examples of important car childproofing measures that must be taken are correctly installing your child’s car seat and making sure that you enable all of the safety locks on the doors of your car. Below, personal injury lawyer Hank Stout of Sutliff & Stout in Austin discusses two methods of safely and effectively childproofing your car:
Method One: Child Car Seat
1. When you are going to install your child’s car seat, you should only do it in the back seat. This is the safest location for the seat to be, in the event of an accident. Also, car seat manufacturers all recommend installing the seat in the back.
2. Secure the child safety seat in the center of the back seat. This will make it so your child will not be able to touch and play with the handles and locks on the car doors.3. Make sure that the car seat is fastened correctly and securely. The seat belts that are placed through the holes in the car seat need to be firm, snug and flat across the chest of your child. Basically, your child should not be able to have one inch of movement in either direction.
- If you are not completely sure that you have installed the car seat correctly, you should go to a car seat workshop in you area. They will teach you about the correct seat belt configuration and placement of the car seat. Your local fire department or emergency services will most likely host these type of workshops. They will be free to the public.
- If your child is not totally secure, a rolled up blanket or towell can be placed around your child to provide additional padding and a better fit.
- Always completely read the instuctions for your car seat to make sure that you are using the correct path for the seat belts. You can also call the car seat company’s customer service line if you have any questions.
Method Two: The Back Seat
1. Childproof locks
Most new models of cars come equipped with locks that are childproof. When these locks are activated, a child will not be able to open the door of the car. The instruction manual of the car will describe how to activate the childproof locks. If your car does not have then, contact the company that made your car to see if you can get them installed.
2. Remove all dangerous and loose items
You will need to remove any items that could possibly fly around in the interior of the car if the brakes are applied suddenly. Books or magazines that are stacked above and behind the child by the rear window could possibly fall on the child during a sudden stop. You will also need to remove any items that your child could possibly choke on. Remove any small objects that the child could fit in his or her mouth. Windshield wiper fluid and other poisonous fluids that are stored in the back seat or under the front seats should be placed in the trunk.