We’ve heard about the dangers of a hot vehicle in the summer, but sitting in a cold car could put kids at risk for frostbite and hypothermia. Lara McKenzie, Ph.D., a principal investigator at the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, in Columbus, Ohio, offers tips to protect your child in the backseat.
Keep her inside the house while you shovel the driveway and warm up the car. To prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, back out of the garage immediately after starting your car; or if your car is outside and snowed in, remove snow around the tailpipe first.
Bulky clothing can prevent the harness on your child’s car seat from fitting snugly. Dress him in thin layers and take off his coat before you place him in the car. Once he’s buckled, help him stay warm by putting his coat on backward or using a blanket.
A car’s buttons, cubbies, and big seats look fun to kids, but remind your child that cars are for going places, not for playing in. Keep your vehicle locked at all times when it’s not being used, and your car keys should be stored out of reach too.