Winter coats are essential this time of the year for much of the nation.
This is especially true for children, who must get out and go to school and daycare in the frigid early mornings.
However, experts say parents need to keep car seat safety at the forefront of their minds, even on cold days.
They want you to think twice about strapping your child into their car seat with that heavy winter coat or sweater on.
Trooper Chris Ray said, “Now when it is cold, we do know that those kids are going to be bundled up, they’re going to be wearing jackets, the straps aren’t going to be quite as tight.”
Ray added, “Parents are going to let those out, and that’s when we run into a problem keeping those kids secure because they’re able to wiggle out of that harness and then they’re loose. And if there is a crash, the injury is going to be more substantial.”
Obviously, it’s freezing outside in much of the nation right now and it’s only going to get worse. But, you definitely don’t want to create space between your child’s chest and the harness or expand the harness for a winter coat and forget to tighten it back.
So, what can be done to keep kids with winter coats safe in their car seats?
Trooper Ray said, “So what we recommend is go ahead and take the jacket off, and just cover them with a blanket.”
He added, “Make sure the straps do hold them in securely. But again we do recommend that you read the owners manual or go to the website for the manufacturer of that car seat, they’ve got some great tips.”
He also said you could buckle your child in, then stick their arms through the arms of the coat backwards.
We need to all remember to do all that we can to be sure the kids are buckled in right. It’s not only the freezing cold season, it’s also a season with a lot of traffic accidents due to slick roads and low visibility.
How do you strap your kid in while they are wearing a winter coat?