Car safety tips for kids
Child car safety is something every parent needs to consider. You travel with your children almost every day, so it’s worth taking the time to make sure they’re safe and secure. Car safety is more than just buckling in – places such as parking lots, driveways, and crossings pose just as many risks as the back seat of the car itself. Read on for our best car safety tips for kids.
How to keep your family safe in and around cars
1. Choose and install the right child car seat, and adjust it properly
Whether they’re ten weeks old or ten years old, it’s important to prepare your car for your baby or child. Children under seven, or shorter than 145cm, must be properly secured in a child car seat that meets Australian standards. This seat must be the right size and height for your child, installed correctly in your car, and properly fastened and adjusted to fit your child. Children under four years old must use a child car seat with an inbuilt harness, while older children can use a seat with a harness or a booster seat.
Make sure to choose a child seat with the correct anchorage points for your car. New Mitsubishi models use ISOFIX anchorage points to meet international child safety standards. Consider having your child seat professionally installed so you can make sure it’s secured properly.
2. Don’t leave your children unattended in the car
It’s a fundamental of child car safety - it doesn’t matter whether you’re ducking into the grocery store, or simply paying for parking, you should never leave your children alone in the car. Not only is it against the law in most states, but it also puts your child at risk of dehydration, heatstroke or an accident.
3. Lock and secure while driving
Children in the back seat can get up to all kinds of mischief. When you’re driving it’s important that you lock or secure anything that could lead to a dangerous situation. Turn on all child locks to avoid doors swinging open, or a nasty injury from a closing window. You should also remove or secure any loose items, to prevent them from falling on your kids in case of a sudden stop.
4. Keep your family safe around cars in parking lots and driveways
Children can be hard to spot in a rear view mirror, and it’s all too easy for accidents to happen in parking lots and driveways. Never let your children play near parked cars, and make sure to monitor them closely in busy places. If your child is small, it’s best to hold their hand until you’ve safely left the area. You can ask older children to wait in a safe spot in your view while a car is reversing nearby.
5. Educate your child to be car safe
You can’t always be there holding your child’s hand, so it’s important to teach them to be car safe in everyday life. Be proactive in teaching your child car safety. Some early lessons include:
- Keep to the footpath, and never play on the road
- Never play near moving cars
- Cross at traffic lights or pedestrian crossings, and make sure to look right and left
- Look out for reversing cars in parking lots