No Child Left Behind: Tips to Remember Backseat Passengers

We’ve not felt the last of summer’s heat, and you know that however hot it is outside, it’s even hotter in your car. That makes your car’s cabin a dangerous place for small children and pets. Stories about children dying because they’ve been left behind in a hot car are heartbreaking, in part, because they are completely preventable. To effectively prevent tragedy, consider these strategies:

  1. Put your purse, wallet or phone in the backseat

Often children are forgotten in the car because they are accompanying parents to a place that’s outside the routine. Parents don’t think to look for their kids because they just usually aren’t with them when they stop in at the office or go to a doctor’s appointment. But, no matter what the destination, you are likely to need your purse, wallet or phone. So, if you put these items in the backseat, you’ll see your littles in the back before locking up and walking away.

Plus, putting your phone in the backseat will also keep you from texting and driving. Win-win!

  1. Look in your rearview and side mirrors before getting out of the car

Looking at what is happening in and around your vehicle is a good habit to get into. It can help you identify any threats, oncoming bikers and spot small passengers in the back in the process.

  1. Teach your kids a reminder jingle

Your kids have a stake in not being left behind, so teach them to help you remember them. Whenever you get to where they’re going, have them do a cheer, sing a song or just pipe up in general so that you know to take them with you.

Of course, these tips are for those whose vehicles do not have passenger sensors. If your vehicle and/or apps allow you to set alerts about passengers, use them. There’s no shame in using technology or creating mental to-dos to prevent leaving children behind.