Learn Why Winter Coats Pose a Car Seat Hazard for Children

baby winter clothing

It’s only natural to bundle up your child in a warm winter coat before heading out into the cold weather. But, if your child will be riding in a car seat, a winter coat may also create a safety hazard.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, winter coats, snowsuits and other bulky clothing can compress in a crash, increasing the risk of injury to your child.

This hazard exists for children of all ages, whether they are riding in a rear-facing car seat, a forward-facing car seat, a booster seat, or the vehicle’s seat using its seat belt system.

So, how do you remove this danger?

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Follow These Child Travel Tips to Ensure Safe and Fun Trips

Baby Travel Tips

With all the modern conveniences for baby travel, there’s no need to give up your love for travel when you have children. Babies are so flexible and love to take everything in. Toddlers love exploring and older children enjoy the adventures other destinations hold.

What’s important is the time you’re spending with your child, the bond you’re creating and the great new adventures you’re experiencing together.

To ensure you have a safe, fun and stress-free trip, rely on the advice of child experts and parents who have learned about traveling with children from experiences they have encountered.

For convenience purposes, these parent-tested baby travel tips are broken down into pre-travel and while traveling categories.

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A car is a dangerous place for a small child to be in

Essay (author: David Martinez)
Danger in the Car

Without question, a car is a dangerous place for a small child to be in. No matter how skilled a person is at driving, when a child is not properly restrained in a car, the driver is driving this precious being to its grave. To exemplify how fragile a baby is, just playfully shaking them puts the minor at risk of damage to its spinal column, so a car accident will leave a tragic sight of a fallen baby if they aren’t properly restrained. Minors dying in accidents isn’t uncommon, in fact, it is the leading cause of death for newborns. Because of this, precaution should be taken – all modes of transportation for parents should have car seats. Uber is an infamous example, as there are many parents who willingly ride on a Uber with their child not on a car seat. In a ABC15 news investigation, a Uber driver reported that 90% of the time they picked up parents without a car seat. That is an insane statistic, as it is probable that out of 10 babies, 9 of them could’ve died. This statement clarifies that this is a problem in today’s society. Because of this, it must become an obligation for Uber to supply their drivers with a car seat to support the driver, parent, and save the lives of children. If the driver doesn’t have a car seat for whatever reason, the ride must absolutely not happen; the parent should have no say in the matter and the driver himself should say no!

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Do You Know the 2018 USA Car Seat Laws for Your State and States You Visit?

USA Car Seat Laws

In the U.S., the federal government has allowed each state to craft its own laws regarding child car seats. The result is varying regulations, which puts the onus on anyone driving with a child as a passenger to know the car seat laws in the states in which they reside or will be traveling in.

This can be challenging, especially for people who live in one state and frequently travel into a bordering state. It also adds extra research for those taking a vacation that requires travel through multiple U.S. states.

To help ease the workload and take the guesswork out of car seat laws in each U.S. state, here is the information you need to know when traveling with children throughout the U.S. in 2018.

The 50 states, plus the District of Columbia, are listed by region and then separated by division according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

It should be noted that car seat laws in some states are not as stringent as recommendations issued by safety experts and pediatricians.

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5 Expert Tips on the Correct Way to Install a Child Car Seat

The number of incorrectly installed car seats in vehicles around the world is startling. Take a look at some of the findings:

statistics
  • In the U.S., 95 percent of infant car seats have at least one major installation error, according to the Journal of Pediatrics.
  • In Australia, more than 70 percent of child car seats are improperly installed, surveys from Australian researchers found.
  • In the U.K., nearly two-thirds of children are riding in car seats that are either installed incorrectly or not the right type for their age, says a What Car? study.

The news gets even worse. The mistakes made in car seat installation increase a child’s chances of being seriously injured while the vehicle is moving, let alone if an accident happened.

There is good news, however. Most incorrect car seat installations are easily fixable. But first, you have to recognize the mistake.

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Extended rear-facing: AAP changes recommendations for 2018

AAP changes recommendations

The AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) has amended their current recommendation for extended rear-facing (ERF) from at least age 2 to as long as possible. In a November 2018 issue of Pediatrics (which came out Aug. 30), the AAP removed the minimum age limit to say that children should ride in a rear-facing car seat until they reach the highest weight or height allowed by the seat.

Until now, the US has had a lower minimum age recommendation for rear-facing than many other countries such as Sweden, where the minimum age for switching to forward-facing is 4 years old. It should be noted that Sweden also has the world’s lowest crash fatality rate for kids under the age of 6. They were the first to develop car seats with 45+ pound rear-facing weight limits.

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