Sometimes when driving, you may be thinking about all the things you have to do and so be driving on autopilot and a bit distracted. Other times you might find yourself in a hurry to reach a destination.
Regardless of what external pressures there might be, it is always good to ensure that your family and friends are safe during travel.
Take the time to ensure the safety and well being of your passengers, as much as it depends on you.
Below are some family car hazards to be mindful of and to avoid:
Improper baby car seat installation
An improperly installed baby seat exposes your child to great risk and is unlawful.
Ensure you do your homework on installing the baby car seat properly following the instructions given. If you are in doubt there are garages you can take your car to, where they will install your baby seat correctly for you.
The harness should not be loose. Ensure this is correctly fastened and adequately secured before driving off. Do not cut corners here.
Leaving lose luggage at the back of the truck
Leaving loose luggage at the back of the car exposes the people in the vehicle to danger. If the car crashes or stops abruptly, all the stuff in the back will start flying forward, causing damage and potentially injury.
To avoid such incidents happening to you and your family, a cargo net can be used to separate the cargo area from the passengers’ area.
Tying all the heavy items at the back with a bungee cord will help. It is also not advisable to pile items above the back seat.
Carrying older kids in the front seat
As a tradition, the front seat is not safe for children. However, many parents believe that because the child has hit the teenage blanket, they can now sit at the front seat. The front seat is not suited for children for various reasons.
First, modern cars come with front airbags to reduce the shock of a crash. However, most modern cars have sensors that turn off the bags when a child is in the front seat.
As a parent, you should therefore not be misguided that your child is safer at the front seat than at the back. Anybody younger than thirteen years should always sit at the back since it is safer for them.
Making phone calls
It is evident that making or receiving phone calls while driving puts the driver at a higher risk of causing an accident and it is illegal. When driving do not be on your phone!
If you need to make or receive a call pull over, make the call then proceed with your journey. Do this every time you want to call.
Leaving children alone in the car
Depending on what state you are in the law varies as to the consequences of leaving a child alone in the car, but the common thread is that as a parent you are responsible for the care and well being of your child.
In the interest of the child’s safety do not leave them unattended in the car. Again it is not worth cutting corners for the sake of saving 30 seconds, or whatever the perceived advantage might be.
This can be true also for dogs and other pets, especially if the temperatures are high and the car becomes excruciatingly hot.
While there are no actual methods of evading an accident, taking some precautions here and there might go some way to prevent one. It is better if you take the necessary measures to avoid an accident by being responsible for the safety aspects you are in control of.