Cute, Cuddly, Comfy, Coats & Car Seats…Dangerous Combination!

1386348636.jpg.CROP.promovar-mediumlargeWith this Louisiana on again and off again cold weather, we never know what to expect! One day we are in coats, scarves, hats and gloves shivering to the bone and the next: shorts, tanks and flip flops. Meanwhile, up north Louisiana is the punch line for unbearable 30 degree temps and they are experiencing something degrees below something. We would end, literally.cease.to.exist with winter storm Jonas or any other name you’d give it…LOL!

None the less, when “Our” winter weather blows through we want to bundle our kids up to keep them warm! Those winter coats keep them warm and are so cute and fluffy, but prevent the car seat harness from securing your child properly and keeping them safe. The average puffy winter coat adds an additional 4 inches of slack to the harness. This allows the child to move 4 more inches than they normally would without that puffy coat in a hard break or wreck. These extra 4 inches could potentially be deadly in crash.

carseat_30963Please remember plush winter coats and car seats do not mix. The coat will compress in a crash and the straps will not be tight enough. What a pain to put the coat on, take the coat off (repeat and multiply if you have more than one child), but the pain of an injured child(s) is a lot worse!

Here are some tips for keeping your kids safe and warm in whatever your winter temps may be:

• Dress them in thin, tight fitting layers! Thin fleece jackets are great!
• Buckle them without a puffy jacket and make sure the harness is correct, snug and passes the pinch test.
• Cover the child with a blanket/coat after the child has been properly buckled to keep them warm.
• Never swaddle before putting your baby in their car seat. Cover the baby with a blanket after being properly buckled to keep them warm. Make sure to tuck the sides, so the blanket does not cover the baby’s face.
• Car seat companies do not recommend using aftermarket products and they can void the warranty. Be cautious in your selections and methods and make sure you are not going against manufactures instructions.

Additional tips and images for keeping your kiddos safe and warm during the winter months: http://thecarseatlady.com/warmandsafe/

Join hands with Lexlee’s Kids in caring for your kids’ safety. If you have any questions about car seat safety, feel free to post here or contact Lexlee’s Kids at 225.372.3991.

Co-written by: Haley Taylor, 2016 Spring SLU Intern

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