As the summer approaches, more and more families will take to the roads for day trips, vacations, and outings. Unfortunately, the increased amount of traffic means an increased risk for accidents. For little ones, car accidents and injuries can be particularly dangerous, and they have the potential to be severe and life-threatening. Before heading out with your loved ones, check out our tips for how to keep your kids safe in the car.
Car Safety for Kids
According to the National Safety Council (NSC), more than 100 people are killed each day in car crashes and collisions, and more than 1,000 people suffer serious, potentially disabling injuries. Although motor vehicle accidents are the number one cause of death for children 5 and older, many accidents and injuries can be prevented by following a few simple safety measures. The NSC recommends the following tips on car safety for kids:
- Follow the rules. Obey traffic laws and avoid driving behaviors such as tailgating, disregarding traffic signals, and failing to indicate when making a turn.
- Take your time in getting to where you are going. Obey the speed limit, and slow down if there is construction or inclement weather.
- Avoid distractions behind the wheel. Keep your attention on the road and avoid distractions such as talking and texting on cellphones or changing GPS settings while driving.
- Drive sober. If you are driving, do not drink, and avoid taking any medications that could impair your judgement.
- Keep children occupied. On long trips, make sure children have something to keep them occupied, and make sure they have plenty of water to prevent dehydration.
- Use seat belts. Require all passengers to fasten up for every trip, regardless of how long or short it is. Model good behavior to your children by always buckling up yourself.
- Use an approved child safety seat. According to the NSC, using the appropriate car or booster seat for your child can reduce their chances of injury by as much as 80 percent.
How to Get Your Car Seat Checked
The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) advises parents that children younger than 4 should be secured in an approved child safety seat, while those ages 4 to 8 should use a booster seat to increase safety.
According to the website Safekids.org, which works closely with government agencies to help prevent and reduce car accidents and injuries, parents should ensure their car or booster seat is being installed and used correctly by checking with a child passenger safety technician. Technicians are available throughout Texas and can be found through the Safekids website or by searching the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration directory.
Before getting your car seat checked, you will need the following:
- Your child’s height and weight
- The instructions for your car seat
- The vehicle manual for your car
When getting your car seat checked, bring your child with you if possible, as well as another adult to help watch your child while you learn the proper way to install their car seat.
Let Us Assist You with Your Case
If you or a family member has been injured in a car accident, contact The Bob Richardson Law Firm today. Our experienced Texas car accident lawyer provides professional legal representation and caring, comprehensive care to assist you in pursuing the compensation your family needs to recover. Serving Austin, Waco, and the surrounding areas, we can help. Call or contact us online today to schedule a free case consultation.