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Leaving sleeping children in the car for under 3 minutes - Page 15

post #281 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by kaspar View Post
it always amazes me how this philospohy applies to mamas who smoke while preg and leave their kids unattended in a car, but not to mamas who formula feed/cio/feed purees/use sposies/give babe his own room/use a stroller etc. etc. etc...
Actually, to me it applies to ALL areas of parenting -- save situations where a child is being severely beaten, raped, molested, or deprived of food and basic needs.

I would not call police or CPS on a mama who formula feeds, does cry-it-out (though it makes me feel , feeds purees, uses disposables (which I also use sometimes), gives a baby his own room, uses a stroller etc. etc. etc...

(I actually tried a stroller with my first before I got familiar with the sling; I ended up having to carry her and push the stroller for the walk home, which was harder than just carrying. ... and with both my daughters, by the time they were about 2 1/2 years old I found it too hard to wear them for long walks, and both enjoyed the stroller by this age.)

So, kaspar, I'm honestly not applying a double standard here: I believe there's a reason why other people's children are other people's children: God didn't intend for ME to parent them. I certainly have enough to do/think about parenting my own.
post #282 of 407
http://www.kidsincars.org/index.html

so many tragedies, that could have been avoided.
post #283 of 407
And so many fear based products to market!! There is some money to be made...

I don't see anything on that website that convinces me that it is dangerous to leave a child in the scenario like what is described in the OP.

I would like to see how many kids have died as a result of being left asleep, strapped into a car seat, in plain sight of the caregiver in a locked vehicle that is not running and does not have keys in it for less than 3 minutes. Because that is what we are talking about here. I just don't see what the big deal is!
post #284 of 407
There were cases in which the child got out of her seat and managed to get the car out of gear even though it wasn't running.

In some cases the parents were killed trying to stop the car from rolling away, and in some cases the child was killed by falling out an opened door and then being run over.

I agree, small risk. But reading those cases certainly made me think twice.
post #285 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadianmommax3 View Post
http://www.kidsincars.org/index.html

so many tragedies, that could have been avoided.
I believe it can be helpful to share information that helps parents make more informed choices about what's best for their families.

In my previous post, I said I wouldn't call police or CPS on someone just because I disagreed with her parenting choices. That doesn't mean I'd never share information that might increase the likelihood of children getting their mother's milk, being held rather than left to cry-it-out, and so on.

By sharing information, I'm not talking about telling people off: I'm talking about being available to aid other parents and help them get the resources they need.

I'm all for avoiding tragedy, and helping others to do the same. Of course, it's also a tragedy when people get killed in car accidents. As pp's have shared, lifestyle changes that help families avoid unnecessary car travel would save many children's lives.

Limiting car travel would probably avert more tragedy than a lot of other changes people could make. Yet I don't frown on parents who spend a lot of time driving their kids around in cars. I respect the fact that each parent, and each person, assesses risk differently. Vive la difference!
post #286 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by blessed View Post
There were cases in which the child got out of her seat and managed to get the car out of gear even though it wasn't running.

In some cases the parents were killed trying to stop the car from rolling away, and in some cases the child was killed by falling out an opened door and then being run over.

I agree, small risk. But reading those cases certainly made me think twice.

I have posted this twice, but since I am the ORIGINAL invisible poster...

6 months ago, I would have said "Yes, of course.".

The past May though, my son was one of "THOSE" kids that got the not-running car into gear (WITHOUT TURNING THE KEYS AND WITHOUT REACHING THE BRAKE PEDAL) and backed it out of the garage into the street. It slammed into a parked car. He was sitting in the front seat while I loaded the otehr kids in. I had no idea he could do that.

Thankfully, noone was hurt. But, the what if's.....

So, while I don't think there is anything really wrong with it, you should make sure yours isn't one of the minivans without the WORKING safety feature that keeps it in park without running. With my van (Ford Windstar) you can jiggle the gear shift hard enough to get it to slip out of gear.
post #287 of 407

It's OK

Given the situation and the fact that it was a 7-11, where she could see the kids and it was 60 degress out side, I don't see any harm in it. I think people are saying "no I would never do that" because of recent events with the poor kids dying in over heated cars.
post #288 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by dubfam View Post
And so many fear based products to market!! There is some money to be made...

I don't see anything on that website that convinces me that it is dangerous to leave a child in the scenario like what is described in the OP.

I would like to see how many kids have died as a result of being left asleep, strapped into a car seat, in plain sight of the caregiver in a locked vehicle that is not running and does not have keys in it for less than 3 minutes. Because that is what we are talking about here. I just don't see what the big deal is!
I don't think these parents are trying to make money for themselves but to save other childrens lives.
"Q2: Who founded Kids In Cars?

A2: Terrill and Michele Struttmann founded Kids in Cars in 1999 after two toddlers, left unattended in a running vehicle, set it in motion and killed the Struttmann's 2-year-old son, Harrison. The Struttmanns have since devoted their lives to preventing similar accidents.

Q3: What is the goal of Kids In Cars?

A3: To save lives and reduce the number of serious injuries resulting from children being left alone in or around cars."


'
post #289 of 407
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by applejuice View Post
siobhang, you know that wikipedia is not considered a reliable source of information, don't you, with your Master's Degree in Anthropology. Your professors would not have accepted that reference as valid for your thesis.
heh, interesting point. esp as that particular wikipedia article doesn't contain references.

however, since I am:

*not writing a master's thesis, I am posting on an internet board; and

* trying to establish a popularly understood definition of exploitation;

I think Wikipedia is not irrelevant - it being a popularly accepted source for every day usage. In fact, for the purposes of discovering "commonly held definitions by the general public", which is, of course, at the heart of Anthropology, Wikipedia is a wonderful source.

But if you want something more, um, academically meaty (to what end, I am not sure - are you questioning the definition of exploitation offered by Wikipedia? Or are you just nitpicking one citation and ignoring the rest of the argument - not a bad, albeit overused, rhetorical device, but I digress).

Quote:
American Heritage Dictionary
ex·ploi·ta·tion (ěk'sploi-tā'shən)
n.

1. The act of employing to the greatest possible advantage: exploitation of copper deposits.
2. Utilization of another person or group for selfish purposes: exploitation of unwary consumers.
3. An advertising or a publicity program.
Or how about from Merriam Webster

Quote:
Main Entry: 2ex·ploit
Pronunciation: ik-'sploit, 'ek-"
Function: transitive verb
1 : to make productive use of : UTILIZE <exploiting your talents> <exploit your opponent's weakness>
2 : to make use of meanly or unfairly for one's own advantage <exploiting migrant farm workers>
- ex·ploit·abil·i·ty /ik-"sploi-t&-'bi-l&-tE/ noun
- ex·ploit·able /-'sploi-t&-b&l/ adjective
- ex·ploit·er noun
Of course, to really understand the two definitions, one has to define "meanly or unfairly" or "selfish purposes" - or at least state how the action one dubs as "exploitation" meets those criteria.

And since the word exploitation can also mean "to use" (which is not inherently harmful), the onus is on the describer to show that the exploitation is in some way harmful to someone somewhere.

Otherwise, what exactly are we arguing about?
post #290 of 407
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by blessed View Post
There were cases in which the child got out of her seat and managed to get the car out of gear even though it wasn't running.

In some cases the parents were killed trying to stop the car from rolling away, and in some cases the child was killed by falling out an opened door and then being run over.

I agree, small risk. But reading those cases certainly made me think twice.
to be completely honest, this possibility the only one I read about on this long thread that might be realistic. My kids love to play "driving". While right now they cannot get out of their carseats, if they learn (and they are clever monkeys, I can tell you) they can easily climb into the front seat, try to start the car or - most likely scenario - try to get out of the car. And having children under age 4 in a parking lot of a 7-11 unsupervised is a horrifying vision.
post #291 of 407
That's true.

Maybe it's surprising but I didn't see any reports of kids just exiting the car and then being hit in a parking lot, for instance. But that does seem like something to worry about.
post #292 of 407
Yup, it happened to our DS too, about a month ago, as I described in a previous post here. It was our neighbor's 2005 Toyota Sienna, which is the exact same model and year as ours. It is supposed to be "impossible" to get it out of park without the keys in....but their 5-yo did it and both kids got a surprise ride across the street on a busy corner. Thank goodness they were not hit by a car coming around the corner.

I think the kidsincars website is excellent. BTW it is a non-profit group, so I do not believe they exist just to raise paranoia to market products. Looking through the incidents, I found it very interesting that many of the incidents involved children who had gotten into unlocked cars that were not running without anyone knowing they were in there.

Caroline248, do you know where I can check on other reports of minvans with this problem ? Toyota claimed this had not ever been reported with this van. I tried to yank our van out of park and couldn't do it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Caroline248 View Post

The past May though, my son was one of "THOSE" kids that got the not-running car into gear (WITHOUT TURNING THE KEYS AND WITHOUT REACHING THE BRAKE PEDAL) and backed it out of the garage into the street. It slammed into a parked car. He was sitting in the front seat while I loaded the otehr kids in. I had no idea he could do that.

........ you should make sure yours isn't one of the minivans without the WORKING safety feature that keeps it in park without running. With my van (Ford Windstar) you can jiggle the gear shift hard enough to get it to slip out of gear.
post #293 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by dubfam View Post
And so many fear based products to market!! There is some money to be made...

I don't see anything on that website that convinces me that it is dangerous to leave a child in the scenario like what is described in the OP.

I would like to see how many kids have died as a result of being left asleep, strapped into a car seat, in plain sight of the caregiver in a locked vehicle that is not running and does not have keys in it for less than 3 minutes. Because that is what we are talking about here. I just don't see what the big deal is!

I was reading one of the stories under "miscellaneous" that seemed to fit this. A 9mo, left alone in the car for under 4 minutes while her mom ran inside the grocery, became tangled in a carseat strap and strangled herself.

That seems to fit almost exactly within the scenario given.

Again, can see and is watching are two different things, and I wouldn't want to risk my child's life so needlessly or give myself a false sense of security that could come back to bite me in the butt.
post #294 of 407

http://www.mothering.com/discussions/newreply.php?do=newreply&noquote=1&p=9256025

from the Kids In Cars website:

Quote:
More than 80 percent of these fatalities result from hot weather or back over accidents.

* Hot and cold weather: The temperature inside a car can reach deadly levels within minutes, even with the windows open a little. Heat exhaustion, hypothermia and even death can occur.
* Backing up: It's difficult for drivers to see small children when they back up. Cross-view mirrors and backup detection devices can help drivers see the rear of their vehicle.
So, in 2006 (last full year) there were 132 fatalities. Over 80 percent, or at least 106, were from the above scenarios, which aren't relevant in the situation above. Every other circumstance involving children playing in and around cars is included in the other 20 or so fatalities. That includes kids playing hide and seek and using the trunk to hide, kids being left in the car for a great deal of time and/or with the car running and/or being out of sight, older children (we were talking babies and toddlers) playing and actually trying to drive, etc. The risk of the scenario mentioned in the OP is pretty non-existent.

If you have a pool, a gun, or even cleaning supplies, stairs, or a stove, you have greater much great risks in your own home than the scenario in the OP.
post #295 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by LilyGrace View Post
Again, can see and is watching are two different things, and I wouldn't want to risk my child's life so needlessly or give myself a false sense of security that could come back to bite me in the butt.
And no one is saying you should do anything you're not comfortable with. Other parents just want the same respect and space to make their own decisions.

The scary thing is, couldn't the 9mo have also choked herself on her carseat strap while mom was driving and thought she was asleep? Aren't some children still rear-facing at this age? I'm not saying I'd feel comfortable leaving my baby to go into a grocery store -- but this seems like a case where something was wrong with the carseat strap, for her to be capable of strangling herself with it.

My girls are both forward-facing now, but this incident makes me realize I want to make very sure, for long car-trips, that there's nothing in reach that my toddler could choke herself with. Also if we have another baby, that baby would of course be rear-facing and this would definitely be a concern.
post #296 of 407
Personally, I would not feel comfortable leaving my children in the car while I went into a convenience store but it does not sound as though the children in the OP were in harm's way. That poor au pair! I would be crying too if I got chewed out by a total stranger.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mammal_mama View Post
I believe there's a reason why other people's children are other people's children: God didn't intend for ME to parent them. I certainly have enough to do/think about parenting my own.
Good philosophy. I agree!
post #297 of 407
Quote:
I also remind myself of the idea that if I wouldnt leave a $50 bill on the dashboard, then I also wouldnt leave my children.
This doesn't really hold water, though. I live in the most dangerous city in this country, IIRC, and I wouldn't leave change in my car, let alone a 50. Cars are broken into all the time for cigarettes.

But kids run up and down the street until 1am or later, and no one hurts them. It's just culturally ok for kids to have almost no supervision, and kids are kidnapped here less often than in a suburban area. I bet I could leave my kids sleeping on the porch every night for 2 weeks, and they'd be fine (before you call CPS, of course I'm not going to). Money is a more valuable commodity in many places and to many people than children. It's a rare person who want to harm children, but most people like money.
post #298 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by LilyGrace View Post
I was reading one of the stories under "miscellaneous" that seemed to fit this. A 9mo, left alone in the car for under 4 minutes while her mom ran inside the grocery, became tangled in a carseat strap and strangled herself.
I'm trying to figure out how this could possibly happen. If my daughter is strapped in properly - snug fit with the shoulders straps where you can't pinch the slack in the shoulders, with the clip up high by the arm pits - there is no way she can loosen the straps, which would require her to lean forward and depress the button between her feet. She just can't reach it. She is at an age where she *might* be able to unfasten the clip, but I have yet to see her do it, and she certainly wouldn't have been able to do it at 9 months. Furthermore, even if she did, she'd have to do some funky contortionist moves to be able to get her head into the straps and her body outside the shell of the seat to strangle herself. If I take her out of her seat without lengthening the straps first, they are SHORT.

My conclusion was that she either had a faulty car seat, or she did not have her child properly buckle in, in which case this has ZERO to do with leaving the child alone, and everything to do with user-error. The child could have done the same thing while she was driving.
post #299 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by MissinNYC View Post
This doesn't really hold water, though. I live in the most dangerous city in this country, IIRC, and I wouldn't leave change in my car, let alone a 50. Cars are broken into all the time for cigarettes.
Yeah, the criminal who targets children and the criminal who targets loose change, purses, and cigarettes, are totally different. The people who will punch out a window to steal a purse or cell phone are statistically not likely to deliberately kidnap a child.
post #300 of 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by North_Of_60 View Post
I'm trying to figure out how this could possibly happen. If my daughter is strapped in properly - snug fit with the shoulders straps where you can't pinch the slack in the shoulders, with the clip up high by the arm pits - there is no way she can loosen the straps, which would require her to lean forward and depress the button between her feet. She just can't reach it. She is at an age where she *might* be able to unfasten the clip, but I have yet to see her do it, and she certainly wouldn't have been able to do it at 9 months. Furthermore, even if she did, she'd have to do some funky contortionist moves to be able to get her head into the straps and her body outside the shell of the seat to strangle herself. If I take her out of her seat without lengthening the straps first, they are SHORT.

My conclusion was that she either had a faulty car seat, or she did not have her child properly buckle in, in which case this has ZERO to do with leaving the child alone, and everything to do with user-error. The child could have done the same thing while she was driving.
Or it could have been an unused tether strap. If the child had done the same thing while she was driving, there probably would have been noise - a wheezing at the least.
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