Safe and Sound: Removing a child’s coat in a car seat

Safe and Sound: Warning for children with coats in car seat

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - A warning for parents, especially with the cold weather, is to be careful when putting your child in a car seat with their winter coats on.

Winter coats can affect a child's safety while in a car seat. (Source: WALB)
Winter coats can affect a child's safety while in a car seat. (Source: WALB)

Police and travel safety experts recommend that you take off your child’s coat before you buckle them in the car seat.

Corporal Dillard Glover with the Albany Police Department said the jacket compresses during a crash and doesn’t hold the child in safely.

"When you put the straps down and you secure it and put them in there, a lot of times because of the jacket and how thick it is, it’s not going to be properly installed,” Glover said.

Glover also said those extra layers could cause problems for your child if you’re in a crash.

"It can actually throw the child around in the car seat or even in more severe cases, if it’s really too loose, potentially the child could be ejected out of the car seat and could lead to some tragic things,”
Glover said

Even if you tighten the buckle all the way, you can’t see how loose it actually is when we take that heavy coat off.

As a rule of thumb, if you can pinch the harness straps, it isn’t tight enough.

Corporal Dillard Glover with the Albany Police Department talks with WALB's Tesia Reed about car seat safety when it comes to children wearing winter coats. (Source: WALB)
Corporal Dillard Glover with the Albany Police Department talks with WALB's Tesia Reed about car seat safety when it comes to children wearing winter coats. (Source: WALB)

With the cold weather, safety officials urge you to remove the coat and use it as a blanket.

“If it’s cold what you can do, when put them in the car and you can actually put a blanket on them for the smaller children and for the toddler aged children you can take their jacket and reverse it and slide the sleeves up and they can wear it to help keep them warm until the car warms up,”
Glover said

While it may seem cumbersome, especially if you have multiple children, just remember it’s all about safety.

“So what’s a minute or too? You may have to leave a few minutes early to make sure your children are in their car seats properly and that they’re secure,” Glover said.

Copyright 2019 WALB. All rights reserved.