Monday, April 20, 2009

Road Rage

Oh! I have a mighty case of road rage!

First, I read this post posted on Life is Just so Daily. For those who do not know, Lainey-Painey is a huge advocate for child safety in cars. Sadly, she lost her nephew Riley in September 2005. It was a tragic accident where 2 year old Riley locked himself in the family car and died of heat exposure.

Links and stories on her blog have really opened my eyes to the dangers of unsupervised children in cars. PLEASE - go check out - knowledge and awareness is power and it could save YOUR kids.

Oh...I was fuming after reading that post...and I personally would have used a few harsher names for the "witch" that Lainey-Painey confronted.

Then, as I was walking to work, my temper started to fume again. As you may know Tamil-Canadians are staging a marathon protest. They have been picketing outside my office. Understand that I am not upset that they are staging a is their right. What I am fuming about is the number of children left sleeping in their cars parked along the route I walk at 3:30am. Sometimes there are entire families sleeping in their cars, sometimes just children. Sometimes the children are in car seats, sometimes not. Sometimes the cars are even running! Sometimes the parents or guardians are also sleeping in the car - sometimes they are congregating a few cars away with other protesters.

The police presence is high - so, within a few metres down the street I stopped two police officers and voiced my concern. They basically said, "Oh, it is not a cold night, and the kids gotta sleep, and the parents cannot be too far away. Don't worry about it."

Don't worry about it?????

Mr. Police officer and Madame Police officer, with all due respect - GO CHECK OUT !

THEN, to top off my morning road rage, here is a news clip I had to review for my media report. YES - two children are in grave condition after a MINOR car accident. Minor...except for the MAJOR error of judgement made by the parental unit to NOT properly secure their children in car seats.

Did you know that it is estimated that 95% of children's car seats are not installed correctly or used correctly? Two of my biggest beefs are infants in the "bucket seats" with the handles upright - CHECK YOUR MANUAL PEOPLE - this is WRONG! And secondly, when children in the harness seats are not tightly secured. CHECK YOUR MANUAL PEOPLE - the straps need to be SNUG. If you have questions contact your local authorities to find out about car seat clinics and checks in your area.

OK. Deep breaths.

I have a serious case of road rage and I only hope and pray this rant of a post gets just one person to rethink leaving children unattended in a car or how their car seats are installed or used.

Children are precious cargo...let's handle them with care.


Lainey-Paney said...

AMEN, Sister!!!!!!!!

I cannot BELIEVE the police there don't think it's a big deal.
...and yet, sadly, I've been told by a police officer in one situation, "well, since we didn't see it, there is nothing we can do about it."
And of course I said, "Well, I guess then if you guys don't SEE me rob a bank, then there's nothing you can really do about it, right?"
Such ignorance.

Tara R. said...

Right there with you Laura! Makes me crazy. I saw a woman at the traffic light recently, her kid, couldn't have been older than 2-3yo, was standing up between the front seats. STANDING UP. I tried to get her license number, but she pulled away too fast. It's child neglect simple as that.

Kat said...

Oh I hear ya. I constantly see infants in bucket seats with the buckle so loose you could squeeze a teddy bear under it. So crazy.

When I was a teller at a bank you wouldn't BELIEVE the number of people that came through with their kids bouncing all over the car. No seatbelts. Drove me NUTS!

Momisodes said...

I couldn't agree more. It drives me crazy to see caregivers leave their child(ren) unattended in cars. Whether it is hot or cold. It's just not right.

We just ordered a new car seat for our daughter since she's outgrowing her current one. Although she is heavy enough to sit in just a booster, we're keeping her in a 5-point harness car seat as long as possible. It's the safest way to go.

Mighty Morphin' Mama said...

I am so with you, makes me crazy too. I have often sat in a parking lot waiting for a mom to come back out of the store after noticing her very small kids sitting in the car alone.
About the bucket seats, there are now some seats that are made so that you can leave the handle up. I almost bought one this time because I have occasionally forgot to put mine down and then had to pull over to do it. So I thought it would be really convenient to have one that it didn't matter!

Miss you friend, I apologize for not coming by, I can't wait to see you!