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How bad is it to leave coats on in car seats? - Page 6

post #101 of 157
Quote:
Originally Posted by an_aurora View Post
Sorry, it's a blanket statement that is totally true. The BundleMe is not ok to use. If you need something warm, go with a shower-cap style cover. Toasty warm and safe
I agree with the Bundle me, but I hate the shower cap styled ones...

I tried it when I had a bucket seat and my kid screamed because it is SO claustrophobic and it doesn't keep the seat warm at all when baby (without a coat) is going from under my coat in the wrap to the cold seat...

I use the Kokoon, like the Bundle me but with no threading and with a thin layer of fleece and corduroy on the back but with nothing touching the straps. It doesn't change anything at all of the way the seat functions and it does the job I need it to do.

(I have some pictures here of the back layer but I didn't show it with the right seat or the straps at the level for a baby because I didn't have a smaller seat available at the time but you can get the idea )
post #102 of 157
Quote:
Originally Posted by chickabiddy View Post
The kind of real-world data some people are looking for doesn't and won't ever exist -- when kids are ejected or injured they are treated on the scene, not put back in their carseats with and without a coat to test the tightness of straps.

People -- not just posters here, but the entire Child Passenger Safety community -- who spend time and energy studiying this have concluded that puffy coats and especially BundleMes are unsafe.
If data doesn't exist, what is the conclusion that puffy coats are unsafe based on? Those people who have spent time and energy studying the issue - what exactly was it they were studying?
post #103 of 157
A knowledge of how crashes happen, what happens during crashes, and how carseats work and don't work. And I didn't say that data didn't exist, just that the specific information -- whether puffy coats alone caused an ejection -- does not exist for obvious reasons. There is plenty of data that shows that loose straps are dangerous (ejection is not the only risk, increased head excursion is also a risk). Coats and BundleMes cause looser-than-optimal straps. Therefore, they are dangerous.
post #104 of 157
Quote:
Originally Posted by chickabiddy View Post
Coats and BundleMes cause looser-than-optimal straps. Therefore, they are dangerous.
This seems like the point where data may be lacking (or at least where people in this thread are wishing they could see some of it.) How often do they cause looser-than-optimal straps? (Probably not always, since people are saying they have coats their kids can wear without loosening their straps. Or do those people just have the straps too loose in summer?) How much looser than optimal are they, on average? Does it depend more on the thickness and material of the coat, or on how tightly the coat fits against the child's body? Is the problem mostly that parents are fooled into thinking the harness is tight when they see it touching the jacket, or is that even parents who get the harness as tight as they can can't compress it as much as it will be compressed in an accident?
post #105 of 157
I have seen many different posts stating that in a car accident the jacket would be left behind and the child ejected. Is this in a jacket that is upzipped? I am having a hard time picturing how the child's shoulders would fit out of the top of the jacket and be ejected? Or is the child and jacket ejected?
post #106 of 157
Quote:
Originally Posted by momtoS View Post
I have seen many different posts stating that in a car accident the jacket would be left behind and the child ejected. Is this in a jacket that is upzipped? I am having a hard time picturing how the child's shoulders would fit out of the top of the jacket and be ejected? Or is the child and jacket ejected?
Children's bones are very soft, because they are still growing. (That's why they are prone to green break fractures.) With that much pressure on them, the bones will bend and break and they will eject.
post #107 of 157
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Momily View Post
We can eliminate the kids not in seats at all (2/3)
We can eliminate the kids in boosters (probably a significant number, given that 4 and 5 year olds are included -- let's imagine 10%)
We can eliminate the children in parts of country, like Hawaii, where people don't wear puffy coats
We can eliminate the children ejected in seasons of the year when children typically don't wear coats.
We can eliminate children where they were ejected in the seat.
We can eliminate children in accidents that wouldn't have been survivable with or without ejection (let's say the car caught on fire on impact, or fell off a bridge).
That probably would work for a statistical analysis, which can be very useful in making policy recommendations.

But, as a mother strapping my kid into her seat, all I need is one piece of data: Has any child, anywhere, ever been ejected because the straps were too loose due to a puffy coat? Someone said earlier that she attended an accident where this happened. Assuming she is being truthful (and why wouldn't she be) that's enough for me. If it happened to someone else, it could happen to my child, too, and I'm going to take steps to make sure it doesn't happen.
post #108 of 157
Quote:
Originally Posted by chickabiddy View Post
A knowledge of how crashes happen, what happens during crashes, and how carseats work and don't work. And I didn't say that data didn't exist, just that the specific information -- whether puffy coats alone caused an ejection -- does not exist for obvious reasons. There is plenty of data that shows that loose straps are dangerous (ejection is not the only risk, increased head excursion is also a risk). Coats and BundleMes cause looser-than-optimal straps. Therefore, they are dangerous.
Again, this is not necessarily true! Assuming the straps are correctly tightened in the first place, coats in a carseat are NOT unsafe if the same tension or strap tightness is maintained. As I stated previously, there was only 1 coat I ever felt the need to adjust the straps for, all other coats the kids had over the years I was able to compress enough without loosening the straps. I get the argument that if you have to loosen the straps to accomodate the coat then it's probably not a very safe idea. I get that, I think most here do. But you can't legitimately present only part of the facts and call it good either. That was like a comment someone made earlier saying that no coats in a carseat has been a policy since carseats have been around. I seriously, seriously doubt that considering the first devices billed as baby carseat travellers weren't even necessarily made to be strapped in and were advertised as much for convenience as safety.
post #109 of 157
Yes, you are correct that if the straps are properly tightened and a coat/jacket can be compressed underneath without any loosening, then it's probably not something to worry too much about.

I guess "properly tightened" is the key here. Out of all the seats I've checked and parents I've taught, I have seen very VERY few kids with properly tightened straps, and very few coats (other than fleece) that can be truly compressed under properly tightened straps.
post #110 of 157
Quote:
Originally Posted by onemomentatatime View Post
But, as a mother strapping my kid into her seat, all I need is one piece of data: Has any child, anywhere, ever been ejected because the straps were too loose due to a puffy coat? Someone said earlier that she attended an accident where this happened. Assuming she is being truthful (and why wouldn't she be) that's enough for me. If it happened to someone else, it could happen to my child, too, and I'm going to take steps to make sure it doesn't happen.
That sounds like paranoid thinking to me... I mean... just getting into the car is a risk... sleeping is a risk... eating is a risk... being alive is a risk. You will always find "one child, somewhere" who has been hurt or killed due to something (even something totally innocuous)... I'm not saying to put your puffy-coated kid in the carseat (I wouldn't, personally), but using just one kid as your data probably isn't the best idea... I say this as a fellow paranoid mommy who *tries* to make decisions on facts not fear...
post #111 of 157
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by crunchy_mommy View Post
That sounds like paranoid thinking to me... I mean... just getting into the car is a risk... sleeping is a risk... eating is a risk... being alive is a risk. You will always find "one child, somewhere" who has been hurt or killed due to something (even something totally innocuous)... I'm not saying to put your puffy-coated kid in the carseat (I wouldn't, personally), but using just one kid as your data probably isn't the best idea... I say this as a fellow paranoid mommy who *tries* to make decisions on facts not fear...
Yeah, I can see how it came off as paranoid, 'one child hurt' isn't generally my decisions making criteria! I wrote what I did because I started this thread and I'm really surprised at the life it has taken on. As a parent, I don't need reams of statistical analysis to make decisions, just a knowledge of the possibilities. I don't cease to do things just because one child has been hurt, otherwise we wouldn't drive, ride bikes, get on planes, walk down the stairs. I'm just saying that in this case, knowing that it is possible for a child to be killed by ejection while wearing a puffy coat is enough for me to stop putting my child in her seat while in her puffy coat.
post #112 of 157
Quote:
Originally Posted by onemomentatatime View Post
Yeah, I can see how it came off as paranoid, 'one child hurt' isn't generally my decisions making criteria! I wrote what I did because I started this thread and I'm really surprised at the life it has taken on. As a parent, I don't need reams of statistical analysis to make decisions, just a knowledge of the possibilities. I don't cease to do things just because one child has been hurt, otherwise we wouldn't drive, ride bikes, get on planes, walk down the stairs. I'm just saying that in this case, knowing that it is possible for a child to be killed by ejection while wearing a puffy coat is enough for me to stop putting my child in her seat while in her puffy coat.
Phew... you had me a little worried, I'm super paranoid & didn't think ANYONE could be more paranoid than me!

Yes, I agree this thread has taken on a life of its own... I'm glad you started it, I never really thought about the coat being an issue and now I am much more aware of the issue, thanks!!
post #113 of 157
The bundleme I have in my infant seat is the same thickness fleece that my kids wear in their seats, and none of them need the straps any more loosened than they need them for jeans and sweatshirts. Honestly, I have to loosen the straps significantly when moving from tshirts/ shorts to sweatshirts and jeans in the winter. Should I just put my kids in their seats naked all the time to ensure correct slack? How about the difference when using cloth diapers? I have to loosen a LOT when I have a cloth diaper on my dd over when she is wearing a huggies.
post #114 of 157
Quote:
Originally Posted by onemomentatatime View Post
That probably would work for a statistical analysis, which can be very useful in making policy recommendations.

But, as a mother strapping my kid into her seat, all I need is one piece of data: Has any child, anywhere, ever been ejected because the straps were too loose due to a puffy coat? Someone said earlier that she attended an accident where this happened. Assuming she is being truthful (and why wouldn't she be) that's enough for me. If it happened to someone else, it could happen to my child, too, and I'm going to take steps to make sure it doesn't happen.
No one is debating whether or not puffy coats have the potential to contribute to accidents. What people (or at least me since I seem to be posting on this thread a lot) are saying is that there are times when there are real safety concerns with exposing your child to the cold, and that parents might want to weigh those concerns. More information, including statistical information, would help parents who have concerns about hypothermia and frostbite (which also kill children) make educated decision. You can believe that puffy coats are not optimal for kids in carseats, an also decide that in a specific situation they're the best available option.

For the record, I do things frequently with my child that have lead to the death of other children. I take steps to minimize those risks, but I don't eliminate them. Today we went skiing/snowboarding, despite the fact that I am aware that people have died doing that.

I once made the choice to allow my toddler to ride in a car with just a seatbelt. I'm sure there are people who would condemn me for that choice. However, in my circumstances I felt it was the best choice. We had gone out for an outing on the subway without the stroller. My son was at the age where he wanted to walk and I thought it would be easier to walk with him if I wasn't also pushing the stroller. Of course I didn't bring a carseat, and I didn't happen to bring a carrier either.

When we were about 10 miles from home, my son fell, hit his head hard on the corner of a wheelchair ramp, which triggered either a breath holding spell or a seizure. He then passed out. We went to the nearest E.R.. When they finally released us it was 1 in the morning, dark, freezing cold (which we weren't dressed for, the temp had fallen dramatically when it got dark). The hospital was in a sketchy neighborhood, as was my home, there had been a series of armed robberies on the street we'd need to walk on to get home. My mother, who has a carseat in her car was on vacation, and any other friends I could think of who might be able to come get me with carseats are single parents so they'd need to bring their children who would then be occupying the carseat. Oh, and I was throwing up non-stop from the stress. And my son was dependent on a feeding tube and a pump -- which was at home, which meant that staying a hotel or sleeping in the hospital waiting room until daylight was out of the question.

I figured my choices were

1) Take subway home -- risk hypothermia (maybe I could have begged a blanket from the E.R.) risk me dropping him or falling while throwing up in the metro, and risk being mugged or killed walking from the metro.
2) Spend the night in the waiting room or a hotel. Risk dehydration for my child. Or feed him by mouth and risk pneumonia.
3) Take a taxi home. Have him sit in a seatbelt. Risk an accident.

I decided that #3 was the best idea, because I had some idea of the statistical likelihood of each one. Information helped me make a good choice.

But in CPST world (at least on this board) it doesn't work that way. When someone asks what the OP asked (they asked how bad it was, not whether it's bad) they get told it's bad, and don't ask questions. Like they're two and can't be trusted to make their own decisions.
post #115 of 157
Here's the thing: we can't know precisely, as in percentage points, how bad it is because there are so many variables. We do know it has the potential to be very bad. I, personally, am not very interested in arguing with parents who acknowledge that there is potential danger but they have made the choice to accept that risk. That's their right. I will argue with parents who claim there is no risk at all (and yes, some are claiming that), because for better or worse, that just doesn't make sense to me and I can't stand that.
post #116 of 157
Quote:
Originally Posted by chickabiddy View Post
I will argue with parents who claim there is no risk at all (and yes, some are claiming that), because for better or worse, that just doesn't make sense to me and I can't stand that.
I dont think any one was arguing that there is no risk at all. We all know that even having a child is a risk, actively birthing a child is a risk, introducing food is a risk, heck giving your child *any* type of toy has a risk....
What my argument was that I was willing to take that risk, when I live in a city that looked like this 2 weeks ago.
post #117 of 157
Thread Starter 
Sorry Mama, what a difficult night you had with your son. I hope he is OK now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Momily View Post
No one is debating whether or not puffy coats have the potential to contribute to accidents. I assume you mean death and injury in accidents... actually I have read some people saying that they don't have the potential to contribute to injury. I realize that's not what you are saying, but I have read other posts in this thread saying that. What people (or at least me since I seem to be posting on this thread a lot) are saying is that there are times when there are real safety concerns with exposing your child to the cold, and that parents might want to weigh those concerns. More information, including statistical information, would help parents who have concerns about hypothermia and frostbite (which also kill children) make educated decision. I see your point here about statistics. You can believe that puffy coats are not optimal for kids in carseats, an also decide that in a specific situation they're the best available option.

But in CPST world (at least on this board) it doesn't work that way. When someone asks what the OP asked (they asked how bad it was, not whether it's bad) they get told it's bad, and don't ask questions. Like they're two and can't be trusted to make their own decisions.
Just for the record, I am the OP of this thread, and I am very happy with the answers I got from the CPST's. I wanted information for my personal situation and they gave me that information. I never felt any judgment or condescension from them, and I appreciate them for freely sharing their knowledge and expertise.
post #118 of 157
What a light that has been turned on for me!! I have never heard of not wearing coats in the car seat nor I have ever seen an article regarding it. Thank you so much for opening my eyes. With dd who is 1 and rr, we take off her coat because it seems her normal body temperature runs about 120.1 and she is always sweaty after sitting in the car. So we take off her coat anyways. However with ds, who is 4 and ff, we leave his coat on. As it gets colder we have been pulling out his heavy coat. I am will taking to dh about this.

Thank you so much!
post #119 of 157
I have a question related to posts on this thread and was asked by a PP, but I never saw a response.

-How do you remove your child from the car seat without loosening the straps? I'll admit that I might be a bit more cautious with my DCs shoulders due to a family trait of easily dislocated shoulders, but I can't get my son in & out of the car seat comfortably without loosening to remove & tightening when buckled it, every single time.

Incidentally, I love the carseat poncho idea. We are definitely doing that - heck I want one myself. I love driving with a blanket on my lap (no garage, no remote start, illegal to idle unoccupied car.)
post #120 of 157
What about kids in boosters?
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