When placing your toddler in a car seat, you always make sure they are strapped in correctly. But did you know that there are still unexpected toddler car seat dangers to watch out for?
In Bristol, England, a toddler reportedly fell out of a moving car while still strapped inside a car seat.
A local news outlet, The Bristol Post, reports the toddler fell out when the right rear passenger door suddenly opened at around two in the afternoon.
Eyewitnesses were stunned to see what happened along the busy Bristol Ring road, describing the toddler as about one to two years old.
Luckily, a fire truck was near the car when it happened, so authorities managed to help the toddler. Soon, a helicopter and ambulance arrived at the scene. Local officials rushed the toddler to a nearby hospital, suspecting a head injury.
Toddler Car Seat Dangers: 5 Important Reminders for Parents
When switching your infant to convertible seats that are forward facing, you should be aware of toddler car seat dangers! | Image: Shutterstock
1. Make Sure to Check Child Safety Locks Before Driving
Even if you’re confident that your child is strapped safely in the car seat, you should always check if the doors are on child-lock. Shutting the door and relying on the automatic lock is risky.
Remember that toddlers are especially curious. Even if they’re in a car seat, their hands can still reach out and grab objects, like car door locks.
2. Place Kids in Age-Appropriate Car or Booster Seats
Watch out for switching car seats too soon. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children under the age of two must be placed in rear-facing car seats. But if they exceed the height and weight limits of the manufacturer before the age of two they can be switched from infant to convertible seats.
3. Read All Manuals Carefully
This applies to your car’s manual and your car seat’s manual. Yes, it’s tedious and you’re pretty sure you don’t need it, but mastering the details could protect your child from injury.
A Safe Kids study found that 64 percent of parents don’t use the tether that secures the car seat so it doesn’t tilt forward. This can protect kids from possible head injuries.
4. If You’re Unsure How to Install a Car Seat Properly, Ask for Help
Don’t be afraid to consult others when installing a car seat. Double check it, especially if you constantly take the car seat in and out of your car. Are the straps too loose or too tight? Are there any objects left in the seat that might injure your child?
Don’t leave a car seat unchecked for months in the car.
5. It’s Safer to Buy Brand-New Than Use Hand-Me-Downs
Yes, they’re much more economical, but there’s no telling what second-hand car seats have gone through. They could have either been damaged in an accident or they no longer have updated technology. It’s important to note that car seats have expiration dates, too!
How do you make sure you child is truly safe in their car seat? Let us know in the comments below.
*lead image: Shutterstock
Sources: Bristol Post UK, The Washington Post
ALSO READ: Mum shares importance of car seat safety on long drives