Overland Park, KANSAS – Child-safety organization
hosted a public event today including demonstrations announcing its launch of “Childproof Your Ride,” a brand new child vehicle-safety program.
Tragically, just as the event got underway, a child was run over and killed in downtown Kansas City.
Supported by a grant from State Farm Insurance, the program focuses on educating and training parents and caregivers throughout Kansas and Missouri about effective ways to protect their children in and around vehicles. Despite vehicle accidents being the number one killer of children in the United States, “Childproof Your Ride” is the first program developed solely to focus on making the environment in and around vehicles safer.
At the event
KidsAndCars.org Director Amber Rollins
announced, “It is common for people to think of their vehicles simply as a means for getting from point A to point B. When it comes to protecting children, every environment has risks. Vehicles can be one of the most dangerous environments that children and families encounter every day.”
Hands-on vehicle demonstrations included:
A vehicle labeling the various dangers that parents and caregivers may not be aware of (
Bird’s-eye-view technology and rearview cameras
Enabling and disabling a car’s back-door childproof locks
Car-seat installation by a certified car seat technician
Window lock for power windows
Actions to take to help a child or animal in distress inside a hot car
KidsAndCars.org encourages parents to visit the
“Childproof Your Ride” website
for more information on how to protect children. The website provides safety information on topics such as car seat safety, blindzones, power windows, vehicle safety features and offers simple habits parents can incorporate into their daily lives to help keep their children safe.
Comments from other speakers at the event included:
“As a dedicated advocate for all aspects of auto safety, State Farm supports
and this new campaign,” said
State Farm spokesperson Kevin Gamble
. “While most public-safety focus goes into how vehicles interact on the road, making sure vehicles are safe environments especially for the most vulnerable among us is a vital yet overlooked aspect of auto safety.”
“Traffic safety affects every one of us – no matter where we are from, what language we speak, or what political beliefs we hold. Whether we are pedestrians, cyclists, drivers or passengers – proactive prevention is a common thread, and its absence a common threat,” said
Ayman Abdul-Rauf, MD, FAAP, Associate Professor, UMKC School of Medicine, Co-director of Operations, Children’s Mercy Kansas Emergency Department
Parent advocate Whitney Rodden
, mother of 14-month-old Harper who was run over and killed by a truck during daycare pickup said, “It’s not enough for you to educate just yourself about vehicle safety. Everyone who cares for your child needs to know how to protect them as well. Whether that’s a daycare, preschool, bus driver, grandparent or even a spouse who may not be as safety-conscious as you.”
Brett Horn, co-founder of Charlie’s House
and father of 2 ½ year old Charlie who died when a dresser fell on him said, “As a parent the worst part of losing my son was knowing that I could have, I should have, done something to prevent his death. Educating yourself about the many dangers vehicles present to children is so important. Don't just buy a car seat and think you have taken all the necessary steps to protect your child. Be proactive, learn how to ensure your child is safe in and around the car, the home, and everywhere.”
“Every fatal crash and almost every injury crash that I’ve responded to over 27 years involved unrestrained vehicle occupants. It is rare that a restrained occupant is seriously injured in a collision, if they are injured at all. When child passenger restraints are installed and used properly they can reduce the likelihood of death by about 70 percent,” said
Officer Jay Fleer with the Mission Police Department
Please mark your calendars for April 16, 2019, for National Heatstroke Prevention Day.