Never leave your baby alone in the car even if you think you will be gone for a short while...
A baby was left alone in a car parked at a grocery store carpark while the mother was presumably shopping inside. According to reports from The New Zealand Herald, this case of irresponsible parenting happened in New Zealand last Saturday morning at Pak’nSave Porirua.
‘Mummy’s gone shopping…’
The baby who was wrapped snugly in a blanket in the carseat had what looked like a handwritten note that read, “My mum’s in doing the shopping, call her if I need anything.” It also had what was believed to be the mother’s cellphone number. The note was written in the point of view of the baby making light of the real risks the mother’s actions could cause the infant.
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The untended baby was spotted by a family who parked nearby. The concerned dad said, “We waited there for a little bit, wondering if the mum was just going to be two seconds and come back. And my wife said, ‘I’m not going in without someone being here with the baby’.” Two other passer-by eventually joined them and one of them proceeded to reach the mum by calling the number provided on the note.
Simply a silly decision?
Eventually another two passers-by waited by the car, with one of them phoning the mother and telling her to come outside. According to the same man the baby looked well-cared for and was of the opinion that this was just “a silly decision made by a tired mother.”
Risks of leaving your baby unattended
Yet so much can go wrong when silly and careless decisions are made. According to Plunket national safety adviser Sue Campbell, there are many risks of leaving an infant or your child in the car alone. For one, “Babies can dehydrate quickly and become very distressed,” and if they are left in the car on a really hot day or cold day they could die from heatstroke or pneumonia.
Secondly, there is the safety issue – a child, let alone a small baby is unable to defend itself from kidnappers or any external threats and worse still they wouldn’t have the means to call for help.
Fortunately in this case, the mother got nothing worse than a few disapproving stares and her actions being shamed on a public platform. There are other parents who are not as lucky. For example, the case of William, the Malaysian boy who was left alone in the car with his siblings but left the car to look for his parents, he ended up dead presumably from a misadventure.
RELATED: Boy, 6, missing after parents leave him in car
Tips on keeping kids safe in cars
- Don’t ever leave your children unattended in the car even if you think you’re going to be five minutes because anything can happen in that span of a few minutes.
- Don’t ever have your baby or toddler sitting in the passenger seat with you. This is dangerous as the child is not seated securely and could have disastrous consequences especially if the driver breaks suddenly.
- Use a carseat. The car seat is meant to keep your kids safe and secure in their seat.
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