Stroller Safety Tips Every Parent Needs To Know
Undoubtedly, a stroller is every parent’s best friend. Whether you want to rush to the supermarket or you are planning to travel to your favorite destination with your baby, having a good baby stroller is indispensable.
There are umpteen benefits of having a stroller including it allows you to carry some more stuff, while your baby is comfortably sitting in it. Apart from all the benefits a stroller offers, there are some potential risks associated with it as well.
A report published by CBS News states that “two children get hurt every hour in strollers." So you have to be extra careful while carrying your little one in a stroller.
These stats are enough to leave any parent baffled while getting concerned about using a stroller. But with a few stroller safety tips, you can keep your kid protected and safe at all times.
Here are some stroller safety tips every parent needs to know today!
Standard Safety Equipment Requirements
Every stroller manufacturer has to adhere to some standard safety criteria before selling the strollers in the market. These requirements include a plethora of essential things that should be present in all baby strollers in order to make it safe for the kid and the parent.
Have a look at what a stroller should have as per the standard safety norms:
Lockable Wheels/ Brakes
All strollers need to have lockable wheels so that the parent can engage the lock to prevent the stroller from moving.
The safety harness is another important criterion that should be available in all strollers. Multiple types of baby strollers have a different safety harness, such as 5-point and 3-point safety harness.
The locking mechanism prevents the stroller from folding while the kid is riding on it. Or the seat of the stroller remains locked while the kid is sitting on it, which prevents accidental folding and safeguards the child from any potential injuries.
Most of the strollers have a canopy to protect your little one from direct sunlight and rains. Canopies can range from a variety of fabrics to sizes, and you can get the right one based on your preference.
If you haven't already bought a stroller, then make sure to look for these standard requirements. Also, if the stroller you have lacks any of these criteria, then it's time to get a new one, as it concerns your baby's safety.
Tips for Stroller Safety
Before taking your baby out in his new stroller, it's imperative to know these stroller safety tips. By following these tips, you can rest assured that your baby will be safe and you will have a rewarding experience strolling on the streets.
Select the Right Stroller
If you haven't bought the stroller yet, then this tip is definitely something you should follow. Selecting the right stroller is essential because there are multiple parameters that will impact its performance.
If our kid weighs more than 40 pounds, then there's no chance you should go for a stroller that supports 30 lbs at max. Similarly, you should focus on other such parameters like the type of stroller.
There is a myriad of baby strollers available, such as jogging strollers and umbrella strollers, so you should choose the right type based on your requirements.
Every baby stroller comes with a seatbelt or safety harness that keeps the baby protected and safe. You'll see two types of safety harness available in the market i.e., 3-point and 5-point.
In terms of safety, strollers with 5-point safety harnesses are better. The harness safeguards the baby from slipping out of the stroller while rewarding the infant some extra support he/she needs while riding in the stroller.
Stability is the Key
To keep the stroller stable, you need to plan it accordingly. Don't overload the stroller with tons of toys and bags. Every stroller has a weight limit, and it is advised not to exceed it by carrying all of your stuff in the basket.
Furthermore, arrange everything in a way to distribute the weight evenly. Putting weight on a specific corner will make the stroller inclined, and it would be hard for you to maneuver it.
If you want to carry some additional items, then go for baby strollers with more weight capacity and bigger baskets.
Stay Closer Always
Always stay closer to the stroller to make sure that you have full control over it. You might have engaged the brakes to prevent it from sliding, but your kid can lean over to create imbalance, and the stroller can tip over.
We suggest you purchase a baby carrycot so that you can shift the baby to the carrycot when using the stroller is not an option.
Use your hand to check if anything like the frame and other easy-reach parts doesn't burn your kid's sensitive skin.
The wider the base, the better it is
Baby strollers with a broader base are more stable as compared to the stroller with a slim base. Those modern and trendy strollers may look attractive, but the slim base can create difficulties for you while maneuvering.
There are many famous manufacturers that offer appealing strollers with broad bases, and having one of these will curtail the chances of tipping over, and the baby riding on it will remain safe.
Fasten the Toys Properly
Babies need entertainment everywhere they go, but as parents, it's your job to ensure that the entertainment is safe and sound. Dangling the toys to the stroller bumper is a common thing most parents do, but not all of them fasten the toys.
Fastening the toys properly will prevent them from falling apart, and your munchkin won’t be struggling to get it back. There are some potential risks of loose toys; it can fall on the baby, hurting his sensitive parts like eyes or nose.
Single-Footrests are the Best
If you want to buy a double stroller for two kids, then go with the option that has a single footrest. A single footrest is a one-piece that spans from one end to the other catering to both kids sitting in the stroller.
Double strollers with a single footrest will protect the baby’s feet from getting trapped, so it’s worth having for every parent.
Inspect the Brakes
Before you buy the stroller, inspect the brakes to find out the strength when engaged. The stroller wheels shouldn't move so that the baby remains protected at all times.
Engage the brakes and try to move the stroller to check whether the wheels actually get stuck with the brakes. Also, the brakes should be easy to use so that you don’t have to struggle to operate them.
Strollers with locking mechanisms are excellent as compared to the pressure ones. While inspecting the brakes, check if your kid can reach the brake lever.
You should get one that's easy to operate a bit out of reach of your kid.
Easy to Maneuver
Steering a buggy can be daunting, especially if you have one without a swivel or locking mechanism. The front wheels of the stroller can move into different directions, and it'd be challenging for you to move it in a straight line while carrying stuff in your other hand.
Check if the stroller has a lock mechanism that keeps the wheel straight so that you can push it easily. Moreover, check the swiveling so that you can steer the buggy with one hand.
A stroller that isn’t easy to steer can invite a lot of potential injuries for the kids like it can get tipped over quickly.
Secure Leg Openings
You need to check the secured leg opening, especially if purchasing a stroller for an infant. Small babies can slip through the leg openings due to their tiny legs. Also, it can lead to the baby getting strangled because the leg opening is too big for the legs but too small for the head.
Check the leg openings thoroughly and make sure that it snug around the legs of your kid. Furthermore, use the safety harness always as it will prevent the baby from slipping down through the leg opening area.
How can I keep my baby safe in their stroller?
Don't fold it when the little one is close by
There will be many instances that require you to fold the stroller like keeping it into the car. You have to make sure that you are at a considerable distance while folding the stroller.
When your baby is close by, folding the stroller can lead to some accidents like their little fingers getting trapped into the hinges. Also, some strollers fold with a snap, so keeping the baby far away at the time of folding will be the best thing.
Don't keep it under the sun for too long.
Going to the park or nearest pool is fun during the summers, but you have to be extra-protective about the stroller. Letting the stroller sit in direct sunlight can heat up the metal and plastic parts, which can harm your kid.
Kids are curious creatures so that they can touch different parts of the stroller like the tray. Before you put back into the stroller, ensure that it's not hot.
Check the harness or seat belt before moving
Before you start strolling with your baby, it's important to check whether the harness is properly attached to the buckle. Babies move and wiggle a lot. Also, there can be bumps on the road.
So, you should ensure that everything is perfect before you start moving the stroller. Going with a 5-point harness stroller can be the best choice as these keep the baby secure, and the little one cannot unfasten it himself.
Don't miss out on the recalls.
Well, the chances of happening a recall are low, but it is a possibility we can't ignore! Recalls happen after users report about the stroller's poor physical integrity or anything related to it that has led to accidents.
After buying the stroller, register it with the manufacturer as soon as possible so it'd be easier for you to claim the warranty, or you will be notified at the time of recalls.
Don't use your phone while strolling with the baby.
Avoid using your phone when you are strolling with the baby as some accidents and mishaps are inevitable when you do this. Try to avoid using the phone or park the stroller in a safe place if it's urgent to attend any calls.
Don't forget to use the Brakes.
Make it a hobby to engage the stroller's brakes just like you do it with your car at the time of parking. Whether you are leaving the stroller unattended without the baby or not using the brakes is a must.
Not engaging the brakes can have severe consequences like the stroller rolling down the street and bumping into any vehicle.
Check if the stroller is fully unfolded before using it.
You may feel that you have unfolded the stroller fully, but there may be cases when the hooks aren't engaged appropriately. Putting your kid into a semi-unfolded stroller can be dangerous, and the stroller can fold anytime trapping the baby inside it.
While unfolding the buggy, try to listen to the click sound of the lock. Also, you can inspect the lock yourself to make sure that it is unfolded correctly.
Don’t forget to read the instruction manual to learn more details about the stroller before getting it on the roads.
Look at the reclining angle of the backrest.
Strollers that have fully reclining backrests are best for infants and neonates because these kids aren’t able to handle their heads.
The backrest that reclines fully is good for small kids as it offers ample support and comfort. You can set an upright angle once your kid grows up without having to change the stroller.
Don't use a stroller with wobbly wheels.
Going on a ride with wobbly wheels is something you need to avoid at any cost. Wobbly wheels can result in tipping issues, and the wheel can even come out while strolling.
As a parent, you are smart enough to imagine the consequences of a wobbly wheel stroller.
No matter whether you are a new parent or an older one, following these stroller safety tips holds paramount importance. It’s your duty to ensure safety for your kids, and that’s only possible if you adhere to these tips.
Go through the other sections as well to learn more about how to prevent any mishaps while strolling. Always go for branded strollers to have a decent experience with them. And it would be even better if you read a stroller’s buyers guide before purchasing one.
After all, it's a matter of safety for you and your kid, so it shouldn't be compromised in any terms.