Traveling with a baby can be stressful enough even if the trip goes as planned. However, your stress levels may be especially elevated if you get into an accident while traveling with your baby. Knowing what to do in such a scenario could significantly improve the outcome for yourself and your child. What do you need to do if you are in an accident while driving with your baby?
The first thing that you need to do is to make sure that you are not seriously hurt. While your instinct may be to reach or move toward your baby, you do not want to sprain or strain your neck or back. You also don’t want to risk making a head injury any worse than it already may be. Assuming that you are alright, you can then check to see if your baby has suffered any serious injuries. If not, you can take the child out of its car seat and move as far away from your vehicle as possible. If the child isn’t crying or isn’t breathing, you should call for paramedics right away.
It may be several minutes before the police or paramedics arrive on the scene. Therefore, you may want to look for anyone who knows CPR or other strategies for stabilizing an infant’s condition. If you have experience performing CPR or making splints, you may want to start administering medical attention to your child. In the event that you can’t find anyone to help, you can minimize additional injury by keeping your baby’s head still or rolling it on its side to allow fluids to escape.
You should take your vehicle in for repairs as soon as possible. This is true whether you are in a serious crash or a minor fender bender. Some companies, like Cascade Collision Repair, know that getting your car fixed means that small dents won’t grow larger or be susceptible to rust. It also means that you can have the brakes fixed or make sure that the engine won’t overheat and burst into flames in the future. Your car should be serviced by a body shop that specializes in the type of car that you own. If the vehicle is still under warranty, you may want to take it to a local dealer’s service center to ensure that any work done won’t void that warranty. Assuming that the accident wasn’t your fault, you won’t have to pay for the cost to repair your vehicle.
After a serious accident, you and your child may be sent by ambulance or helicopter to a hospital for evaluation. However, you should still go see a doctor even after a minor crash. This is because it can take hours or days for symptoms related to neck, back or head injuries to present themselves. Babies may be vulnerable to serious injury even if a crash takes place at low speeds because they aren’t as strong as an adult or older child. If a doctor is able to intervene early enough, a baby’s body may be resilient enough to heal itself completely. Your doctor may also be able to suggest ways to help manage your baby’s pain as it recovers from the crash.
Getting in an accident while driving with your baby in the vehicle may be one of the scariest things a parent can experience. However, if your child is properly fastened, it may be possible to keep injuries to a minimum and give your son or daughter the opportunity to grow into a happy and healthy adult.