Tragic headlines of kids left inside cars hit the news every summer, and parents everywhere feel like they could never do such a thing. But unfortunately, accidents do happen, and anyone can make a horrible mistake in a rush. Which is why the Car Seat CoPilot Automatic Alert System is hopefully here to change that.
KidsAndCars.org reported that 53 children died in hot cars in 2019 alone, and 56% of those children were left in the car unknowingly. The site adds that more than 900 children have died in hot cars in the US since 1990. Of those children, 88% were 3 years old or younger, at an age where they can't yet call out for a parent who is walking away from a car after locking up. And while it's horrible to think about, busy parents rushing through errands or their morning drop-off routine need to be aware of these risks and work to decrease them.
To keep little ones safe and give parents peace of mind, Car Seat CoPilot Automatic Alert System is now available online. Romper viewed the system in person at the Consumer Electronic Show (CES) in Las Vegas this month, and it's really very simple-looking. The car seat clip attaches to the straps of your child's car seat, and comes with two key fobs (yaaaas, spare key). When you hop out of the car at the grocery store, the seat belt clip communicates with the key fob and will set off the fob's alarm if it gets more than 10 feet away from your vehicle with your child's car seat clip still buckled.
One of the Car Seat CoPilot's coolest features is that it doesn't rely on an app or Bluetooth, which can lose signal or connectivity. This product uses good old-fashioned radio frequencies to trigger the alarm instead, so, they say, there's no lapse in protection for your kiddo. The clip and fobs include rechargeable batteries with an average life of 63 days, and the company says they only take about 30 minutes to charge fully before you can pop them back into place.
Having protections like this in place can really mean the difference between life and death according to experts in child safety, like KidsAndCars.org. It's also important to build safety habits around getting out of the car, like opening the back door every time you park to be 100% sure no little ones are left behind. They even recommend leaving something like your purse, wallet, phone, or employee badge in the backseat so you can't go inside without looking behind you first. You can also speak with your child's day care provider and ask them to call if your kid hasn't arrived at the expected time, and when you're with your partner or others, verbally confirm who is getting each child out of the car and do a headcount before walking away.
Perhaps the most important thing you can do is incorporate these practices into your everyday life so that when schedule changes or holidays come up and you're out of your routine, you have safeguards in place to protect your child. These are often the times when little ones are forgotten. But since all of these changes are behavioral, and humans make mistakes, having a product like the Car Seat CoPilot could be a great option for your sanity.