Baby Dragged By Car Highlights Dangers of Unattended Children: Kids and Cars Canada

by John McKiggan

Baby Dragged By Car

The Ottawa Citizen reported that a 6 month old boy suffered head injuries after being dragged 12 meters by the family car when it rolled backwards down their driveway after being knocked into gear by his 3 year old sister.

The infant’s 14 year old sister was helping her mom get the family ready for a trip. The baby had been buckled into a car seat and the car seat was placed on the driveway beside the family car. The family’s 3 year old daughter was playing in the front seat of the car and managed to knock the car into gear. The car started rolling backwards and dragged the infant in his car seat for almost 12 meters. Media reports list the baby as being in stable but serious condition.

Unattended Children in Cars = Danger

This incident highlights all the many dangers that Canada have been trying to prevent. Leaving children unattended in a vehicle, even for a short period of time, can have unintended, and often tragic consequences.

And that’s why I have agreed to chair Canada! To help educate the public about the dangers automobiles can pose to our children and to lobby for better safety features in automotive vehicles.

Could it Happen to You?

Do you know if your car has the safety features that will prevent it from shifting into gear by mistake?

Here’s how you can check to see if your vehicle can be shifted into gear accidentally. You want to make sure your vehicle has a “brake transmission shift interlock” (BTSI) that works in all shift positions.

6 Simple Steps:

1. Make sure your vehicle is parked on a flat surface;

2. Get in your car and put the emergency brake on;

3. Make sure no one is in front of or behind your vehicle;

4. Put the keys in the ignition in the off position;

5. Turn the key one click forward ;

6. Try to shift your vehicle into gear without putting your foot on the brake.

What Happened?

If your vehicle shifts into gear, then you do not have brake transmission shift interlock in that position. You should be aware that your vehicle can roll if it is accidently shifted into gear.

Try the same test in all key positions. If your vehicle shifts into gear without putting your foot on the brake, then your vehicle does not have BTSI at all!

Most vehicles manufactured today have BTSI in some positions but not all. The old saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. Simply knowing that your vehicle can accidently roll should make you more aware of the potential dangers to you and your children.

More Information

Formal Agreement Reached on Brake Transmission System Interlock

Automatic transmission cars can kill your child

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