on the road safety tips

Whether you're taking a long vacation trip, or going on a weekend outing, these safety tips will help keep kids safe in the car or at the hotel.


When you're on the road--for the weekend, for a long vacation, or just running an errand--remember these basic safety tips for traveling with your child on board

In the Car

Summertime is a time for car trips. Before you hit the road, take the following precautions:
  • Check that your child's car seat is installed properly and that it is the appropriate size for her weight and height. For more information on child seats for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

  • Avoid seat belt injuries by using booster seats for older or heavier kids who are too large for car seats, but too small to properly use seat belts.

  • Do not let children play in or around vehicles. And keep car keys in places where young children cannot get to them.

  • Never leave children unattended in a vehicle, especially during hot summer months. Overheating is a primary concern, but curious kids may also shift a car out of park into neutral causing it to roll if the parking brake is not set.

  • Set automatic window locks to prevent crushing injuries caused by kids playing with automatic window buttons, and engage child safety locks on all rear passenger doors so that kids cannot unlock them while the car is in motion.

  • If you need to attend to your child, pull off the road and stop the car, never turnaround to reprimand or tend to children when you are driving.

  • Always use a hands-free headset when driving, and limit the length of your conversations--talking on the phone is a distraction.

  • Keep emergency supplies in the car trunk, these should include a properly stocked first aid kit, a wind-up flash light, cereal or granola bars, bottled water, jumper cables, and a small utility shovel.

  • Keep your spare tire properly inflated, and keep a container of anti-freeze coolant in the trunk at all times.

    At the Hotel

    Hotels can be a place of exploration and unseen danger for young children, be sure to take these steps to make your home-away-from-home safe:
    • When booking a hotel for a family trip, always check to see if they provide rooms that have been child- or baby-proofed, or if they provide supplies to make them safe for young children. You can also pack your own, like socket covers, and cabinet latches.

    • If your child suffers from allergies, ask for a smoke-free room. You should also bring a hypo-allergenic pillow or pillow covers for your child to use.

    • Test all door and window locks to make sure they are secure, and always keep the bathroom door closed.

    To be extra safe, remove the following objects from the room:
    • Ashtrays, glasses, and sharp objects like letter openers and pens. Place them on a high shelf in the closet.

    • Move furniture away from windows, and keep doors to TV cabinets closed to discourage your kids from climbing on them, check bureaus, desks, and armoires for security, to ensure they won't tumble over.

    • Tie up curtain cords and unplug lamps with hanging cords and secure so that they can't be pulled down of desks and nightstands.

    • Always check water temperature before letting kids get in the shower or bath.

    Read our hotel child proofing article for more safety tips.

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    Important Disclaimer: This information is not meant as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always consult a doctor with questions about your or your child's condition. NickJr.com does not recommend or endorse specific tests, products, procedures, opinions, or other information provided by any sponsors or other third parties. Please also see NickJr.com's Terms of Use.
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