As a parent, one of your primary goals in day-to-day life is simply to keep your children alive. Sometimes, they seem to actively want to thwart you, from the toddler who keeps trying to explore the electrical outlets to your grade-schooler who throws epic temper tantrums over the need to go to bed at a healthy time or to eat something other than fried food.
One of the biggest dangers to your children is something that you likely take for granted as a casual daily activity. Every time you get in the car, you expose your children to one of the leading causes of death and injury for minors.
What can you do to reduce the risk to your children on your way to the grocery store or the grade school drop-off line?
Put your children in age-appropriate seats
Any parent with a child over the age of three or four has probably had to have a booster seat negotiation at least a few times already. The older children get, the more they fight the idea that they require specialized restraints.
However, safety data from car crashes makes it quite clear that the best way for you to protect your children is to use a seat that is appropriate given their size so that they have better protection if a collision does occur.
Invest in vehicles with safety-focused designs
If you can afford to do so, upgrading your vehicle to one that has side collision protection and child-friendly design could make a major difference for everyone’s safety in the event of a crash. Even a used vehicle with good safety ratings could do more than your current vehicle to keep your family safe on the road.
Another important consideration is the fact that your children will eventually become drivers themselves. You should be aware from the earliest days of driving with them in the vehicle of how your behavior will influence their later driving behaviors. Avoiding distraction at the wheel and making safety your top priority at all times will help you set the right kind of example for your children so that they grow up to become safe drivers themselves.
Identifying and controlling factors that contribute to your children’s risks can keep them safer if you experience a serious car crash.