The 5 Child Safety Practices to Implement Now from Safe in the Seat

Buckle up for Part 2 of our Child Passenger Safety Month series!

We’re continuing our conversation with Michelle Pratt, CPST, of the popular and oh-so-helpful resource For Part 2, we picked her brain on the safety practices parents most commonly overlook and the five simple steps you can take to protect your littles.

Here’s what she shared:

  • Wear Your Seatbelt & Ensure Your Kids are Buckled
    “We say this all the time, but it’s too important not to mention.”

  • Lock Your Car &  Keep the Keys Out of Reach
  • “Make sure your keys are hidden and out of reach. A lot of people don’t realize their kids could grab the keys and head out to the car without them. You can’t have them starting the car in the garage. So, for that reason, in my house we have a rule: ‘You can’t go out to the car without talking to me first.’”

  • With Car Seats, Don’t Progress to the Next Stage Too Soon
    “Don’t assume state law will provide guidance as to when you can move out of an infant seat, or up to a booster seat. Many states don’t have laws governing critical aspects of car seat use; or, if they do, the law is based on the bare minimum, not best practice. For example, Florida doesn’t even have a booster seat age, yet research has shown us booster seats are important. My point is, we have sound guidelines. Follow them. Check the NHTSA website if you’re ever unsure.”

  • Read the Manuals
    “People are in the habit of chucking manuals to the side. Nobody reads them. But with car seats, that’s not an option, especially when it comes to the things that change as your kids grow. We’ve got to pay attention to those.”

  • Never Assume “I’d Never Make That Mistake”
  • “You can be a great mom and still make a mistake. They’re not mutually exclusive. No one is perfect. That’s precisely why we make good safety practices a habit, so the fail-safes are in place even when we’re having an off-day.” 


    For more of our interview with Michelle, and her thoughts on the Pico car seat, check out Part 1 here!