Protecting Your Special Needs Baby in the Car

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 11,578
    Stephanie Tombrello with SafetyBeltSafe U.S.A. discusses some considerations for keeping special needs babies and children safe in the car.

    Stephanie Tombrello: Hello, I am Stephanie Tombrello, Executive Director of SafetyBeltSafe U.


    A. Today we are talking about how to protect our youngest travelers in the car. Some babies have special needs and we want to show you how to transport them safely. Sometimes babies were born with problems that make it impossible for them to ride properly in a rear facing safety seat. If a child has such a challenge and the physician suggest that parents should be looking for a car bed to protect them properly. In a car bed a baby can lie on his or her back, side or tummy and that may make a big difference in comfort and safety in the car.

    As children get a little bit older, some of them will fit in a harness system lying flat on the car, if they are too large for using a car bed. There are other issues that develop as children get older. Some children have emotional issues that make it very difficult to keep them in a child restrain and they may need a special harness that fastens up the back, in order to ride safely while being transported in the car. Other children or even infants can end up in a situation in which they break a limb or have to have some surgery and because of that cannot ride in their regular safety seat.

    Many youngsters have problems with hips, which leave them to be in cast that are called spica cast. Their legs then stretch out in an angle and they can't bend properly in their regular car seat. These problems which often don't last very long, require the use of a safety seat that is designed with very low sides, so that the cast can be supported, but the child can ride in the car.

    Now we have spoken about how to meet the special needs of your baby or small child in the car. Next, I would like to give you a one minute safety check to use after you have installed your safety seat and put your baby in the car.