10 Important Rules to Keep the Kids Safety When Driving
Driving on the roads is hard and dangerous enough as it is – but when you have children, you need to be even more careful. Whereas stuff like car seats and seat belts is common knowledge, there are more rules that you need to know.
Kids are very unpredictable. Therefore, expect driving with little humans to be way more challenging than normal driving. Children are not aware of how dangerous it can be if they distract you – which means you can’t easily make them stop. They are not a TV with a remote control. If they want to scream, they will.
Although children are hard to be controlled, you are the one responsible for their safety. It is important to be prepared before hitting the road with children in your backseats, so here are some important rules you need to keep in mind.
1. Put your child in the right seat
First of all, you should know that children below 13 years old should sit in the backseats. The reason for this is that children should be protected from airbags, in case of an accident.
As they grow older, they can start using a booster seat, but still in the back. Apparently, this significantly reduces the risk of serious injury in case of an accident.
2. Buckle your children
Buckling your children to their seats is extremely important, as it can prevent them from flying from their seats in case you suddenly use the brakes. Ensure the shoulder belt crosses their shoulder, not their neck. Also, make sure that the lap belt isn’t across the tummy, but across the actual lap.
Also, before you start the car, make sure that everyone has buckled their seatbelts. Moreover, stop the car in case anyone unbuckles the seatbelt while on the road.
3. Prepare them for the drive
It’s hard for children to understand that driving takes a lot of concentration. Before hitting the road, have a conversation with them about how they should behave. Help them understand that driving is something serious. Also, explain how misbehaving could affect you while you are driving, and how dangerous it is.
It’s important for them to know that if they shout or throw something in the car, you could be distracted, and that means you risk having an accident. Let them know about all of this, and agree on some punishments if they misbehave. For example, you could tell them they are forbidden to play on the computer for a certain amount of time. If they still misbehave, enforce the rules.
4. Check your car’s safety
This is another essential rule, as the car is important as well when trying to keep your children safe. Make sure that the car seats are installed correctly, and there are no objects that could be dangerous in case of a sudden brake.
Before going to the road, activate some locks that prevent your car’s doors to be opened from inside. Lock the windows as well, as you don’t want your kid to stick their heads outside the window while driving.
Put anything that they need near them, like water bottles, napkins or some food.
5. Make sure the children are occupied
This is very important because if they have something to do, they will be too concentrated to distract you.
Especially if you’re going on longer roads, you could have another adult sit with the children and keep them occupied. This person could play games with your kids or just have conversations with them, to make sure they don’t distract you from driving.
Another thing you can do is to play some music for your kids and sing along with them. They usually love this, and it’s an easy way to keep them entertained. You could also borrow some audio books to keep them occupied.
Let them have some toys that cannot harm them in case of an accident. Also, give them some snacks. Moreover, make sure they are not the kind of snacks that can easily make a mess in your car.
6. Take breaks
Taking breaks while on the road is crucial because children easily get bored. Kids are most likely to distract you when they are bored, so breaks ensure that they don’t get bored that easily and that they have other activities besides sitting in the car.
You could also relax your mind from driving while letting your children get rid of the pent-up energy.
7. Listen to their needs
Ensure you know your children’s needs. Some require certain things to be able to be calm during the road. For instance, if the kid has sensory issues, he may be bothered by the seat belt. Dress them in clothes that don’t let the seat belt touch their sensitive skin.
8. Don’t leave your child alone
It is crucial that you don’t let your kid alone in the car. It’s better not to leave them alone not even near a vehicle. Studies show that the risk of them being injured is higher, as it is very hard to spot them when they’re close to the car.
9. Don’t text and drive
This is a general rule, but never text while driving. If you do this, the risk of accidents increases tenfold. You should fully pay attention to the road, to keep yourself and your children safe. You don’t want a tragedy to happen because of a Facebook notification, do you?
10. Praise your children
If your kids have a good behavior on the road, congratulate them. Tell them how proud you are of them because they respected the rules. This will make them feel good and, maybe, ensure future good behaviors. And who knows, maybe you could give them a little treat as well.
The passengers’ safety should be ensured at all times, especially when driving with children. By following the rules mentioned above, you may be able to safely drive your vehicle without any potential risks.