Tuesday, September 9th, 2014
Talk about staying power! Unlike Culture Club, Ghostbusters, and ColecoVision video game consoles, the iconic ”Baby on Board” sign is still kicking, and on Sunday, celebrated its 30th birthday. (Yep, I feel old.) To say the sign was ubiquitous during my childhood is an understatement. It seemed like you couldn’t go down a single road in the 80s without spotting a steady stream of yellow diamonds hanging in the back car windows. And just like back in its heyday, the stick-on sign still serves as a reminder to other drivers to drive safely.
But there’s nothing like a milestone birthday to make a person (or a company) think about ways to keep up with the times. And that’s exactly what Safety 1st, the brains behind the sign, is doing. Beginning early next year, it will include 1 million “Where’s Baby?” window clings packed with the Baby on Board signs. The new clings will tie in with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) campaign to keep unattended children out of cars — and help prevent accidental heat stroke incidents. (Safety 1st’s big announcement coincided with this month’s Baby Safety Month.)
NHTSA is no doubt hoping the Where’s Baby decals find the same success as their Baby on Board predecessor. “Tragedies from leaving children unattended in hot cars is 100 percent avoidable. Prevention means never leaving children unattended in a vehicle and always checking the backseat before walking away,” said NHTSA Acting Administrator David Friedman. “Everyone in the community has a role to play and posting these window decals is a great way to build awareness and spread this important safety message to other motorists.”
Tell us: Do you think signs like “Baby on Board” and “Where’s Baby?” will help keep kids safe on the road?
How safe is your baby’s gear? Check out our Products Recall database to find out. And be sure to like All About Babies on Facebook to keep up with the latest baby news!
Image of Baby on Board sign courtesy of Safety 1st via Facebook
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Friday, July 25th, 2014
Fifteen minutes is about the time it takes for most of us to run a quick errand. But it’s also how long it takes the inside of your parked car to climb to 109 degrees hot in the summer months — and that’s with the windows cracked open a couple of inches. Sitting inside such sweltering conditions, of course, delivers a punishing blow to the body, especially so for babies. Think brain and organ damage, heat stroke or even death, a nightmarish scenario we’ve seen play out too many times this summer. (Scary fact: 36 children die in overheated cars in the United States every year. Read this eye-opening Parents magazine piece about hot car dangers.)
But two new apps are hoping to put an end to this very preventable problem — and offer overwhelmed, distracted, exhausted, busy parents a helping hand. The first, “Precious Cargo,” was designed by a North Carolina dad of a one-year-old and is simple yet effective, reports Today: When you sit down in the car and Bluetooth is activated, you’ll receive a message from the app asking if you’re traveling with precious cargo (i.e. your baby). If you are, you enter the child’s name, and once the engine stops, you’ll receive an alert to remind you there’s “precious cargo” in the car. If you’re driving sans baby, the app is deactivated until the next time the car starts up.
The second, Kars4Kids Safety, is also a piece of cake to use. An customizable alarm goes off whenever you and your phone exit the car to remind you to retrieve your baby from the carseat. The app, created by the nonprofit Kars4Kids, just requires a Bluetooth-enabled phone and car.
Personally, there are just a few apps that can actually help make my life easier. These are among them. Besides the fact that they’re insanely user-friendly, they also reach us in a most reliable place — our cell phones — which most of us won’t even walk down the hall of our home without carrying. And they’re affordable to boot — Precious Cargo is 99 cents, while Kars4Kids is free. But the peace of mind these handy apps can offer us wiped-out, on-the-go parents? Invaluable.
Tell us: Would you use an app to help you remember to take baby out of a parked car?
Getting ready to go on a trip? Visit our Diaper Bag checklist to make sure you don’t forget a thing. And remember to like All About Babies on Facebook to keep up with the latest baby news!
Image of baby in carseat courtesy of Shutterstock
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