MADISON, Wis. – Travel can be as much a part of the holiday season as baked goods and decorations, but for kids travel safety needs to be integral to any family gathering tradition.
There are some critical steps families can take to keep children safe on the road this winter, according to Rishelle Eithun, pediatric injury prevention manager, UW Health Kids.
“Winter can be a very enjoyable time for kids and families, but it is important to keep a safety checklist handy,” she said. “Many of the winter injuries we see are preventable, so we encourage families to keep in mind simple practices as they travel to see family and friends.”
The following winter safety tips can help, according to Safe Kids Worldwide and UW Health Kids:
- If you want to warm up your car before leaving, remove it from the garage first to avoid the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.
- Take a few moments before getting into your car to walk around and check to make sure your tailpipe is not blocked with snow which can cause problems with carbon monoxide.
- Inspect child car seats and boosters to make sure they are in proper working order and the child is in the right seat for their age.
- Bulky clothes or winter coats can prevent the proper fit of a car seat harness for kids. Adjust the harness while your child’s coat is off, then put it over the child to help them stay warm.
- Never leave your child in a car while it is running to go into a store.
- When packing luggage or gifts in a vehicle try to place them in the trunk or secure them, as loose objects can become hazardous in the event of a crash.
- Be prepared for added traffic on the road and in store parking lots.
A recorded interview with Eithun is available or she is available for interviews.