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Thread: Loose items in car (aka projectiles?)

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    Default Loose items in car (aka projectiles?)

    I have been surprised to see this debate on fb in the comments following some ideas for keeping kids busy on road trips. There are people saying that any loose item in a car is a projectile and putting the child at risk.
    is this a whole new level of helicopter parenting or am I a fool? I try to keep my van clutter free but my kids bring toys, books, snacks, water bottles. I mean, I don't know how we'd survive without these items!
    Thoughts?

  2. #2

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    My car is cluttered a lot of the time. I don't think it's a big deal. As long as you're not like, carrying javelins around with you.

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    I guess I'm willing to risk death by crayons.

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    Darnit. Will have to stop bringing the javelins on road trips.
    Suja, I hope you don't have those crayons sharpened to a point.

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    I've heard this, too, but we have at least a diaper bag and water bottles on all trips. Often snack containers, too. For long trips (multiple hours) we have DVD players and toys as well. I also am not sure how we'd survive without those things. Our kids are too little to play the common road trip type games.
    Jessica (32) and Ryan (32). Madelyn born August 5, 2009; Malachi born December 23, 2010 and Nathaniel born July 19, 2013. Lost a loved baby 02/29/12, 05/14/12 and 07/05/12 all due a serious allergic reaction to fabric softener.
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    I paid more attention to this when my son was a baby. So I didn't buy those infant car seat mirrors or window shades or other paraphernalia that many stores sell because 1) there's no evidence that a kid needs the mirror, etc (nor did I) and 2) I'd read some cpsc thing or other child safety guides that said that these items can kill your kid in an accident. They're like bumpers sold for cribs: there's no need for them and they are potentially dangerous. But now? I have a pouch that's strapped onto the seat which holds books and a few toys. I keep a blanket back there. And I'm sure that I have other random items that could fly around. At this point, if we get in an accident, well... Let's just hope that we don't.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ibisgirldc View Post
    I paid more attention to this when my son was a baby. So I didn't buy those infant car seat mirrors or window shades or other paraphernalia that many stores sell because 1) there's no evidence that a kid needs the mirror, etc (nor did I) and 2) I'd read some cpsc thing or other child safety guides that said that these items can kill your kid in an accident. They're like bumpers sold for cribs: there's no need for them and they are potentially dangerous. But now? I have a pouch that's strapped onto the seat which holds books and a few toys. I keep a blanket back there. And I'm sure that I have other random items that could fly around. At this point, if we get in an accident, well... Let's just hope that we don't.
    The mirror is strapped to the headrest so how is that a problem? Or are you referring to a different type of mirror?

    I have heard about the projectile thing. IDK. Are there any statistics on 'projectile-related injuries'? I wonder if it's very common?

    I would think it's the type of item that is a problem...something very hard, sharp or pointy. Although for some odd reason I feel like I heard a story about someone being hurt by a tissue box in an accident. I am either crazy or that is some stupid urban legend

    A solution would probably be of those seat pouch things described above. I am trying to think if I have loose objects in my car. I think there is a soccer ball and a container of kitty litter (I don't have a cat! Supposedly it's helpful if your tire is stuck in the mud!)...I think that is it. I let my kids bring a toy or doll if they want. We usually just listen to the radio.
    Thing 1 (7), Thing 2 (5), Thing 3 (2)

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    I actually think about this quite a bit because an old friend of dh's lost his wife in a car accident that way. I believe the projectile was a steel water bottle. Anyway, we still bring water bottles in the car, but I try to keep them in the bins at the bottom of the side front doors instead of in the center cupholders (pass them back when asked). We do have an ipad that she uses on long trips that could do some serious damage, and I worry about it but still allow her to have it. I don't worry about drawing pads, crayons, small toys etc. Just heavy/hard stuff.
    -- mom to DD1 1/98 and DD2 10/09


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    Quote Originally Posted by macksmom View Post
    The mirror is strapped to the headrest so how is that a problem? Or are you referring to a different type of mirror?
    We're probably talking about the same item. They're not bolted down. If you get rear-ended, for example, then it can rip lose and go flying. There is literature on it (cpsc,Iihs, or safe kids.org... Something like that) and like the window shades that many baby stores sell, while they seem like a good idea, in an accident, they can be deadly. I don't know statistics, but I recall seeing repeatedly that these car items are in that category of "safety" things that aren't actually safe. (Like baby positioners...)

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    I am anal about hearing "stuff" moving around in my car when I'm making turns so most stuff is contained in my car...but definitely NOT because I worry about projectiles. That's probably at the bottom of my *not very long* list of worries. I worry about my kids being properly restrained...and the rest of it I chalk up to the risks of leaving the house.

    In my trunk I have a big blue IKEA bag with all my reusable grocery bags. Anything else is under the floorboard back there-emergency items, tool kit, blankets, etc. In the back seat the girls each have a bag that straps to the front seat that folds up and velcros shut when not in use. They use that to hold things like My Little Ponies, books, crayons, etc. My purse is probably the only real projectile in the car and I try to keep it down at my feet sort of under the seat (admittedly, this is because if I do that I am not tempted by my phone to pick it up or glance at it while at lights and other times that are easy to feel like are "safe"...I have to put it out of sight to not glance at an incoming text out of habit. Which I'm trying to break)

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    I forgot about my purse. That can potentially do serious damage. I also have a box of CDs, one with TP, wipes, books, etc. in addition to the loose handcream and sanitizer. Still not worried.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ibisgirldc View Post
    We're probably talking about the same item. They're not bolted down. If you get rear-ended, for example, then it can rip lose and go flying. There is literature on it (cpsc,Iihs, or safe kids.org... Something like that) and like the window shades that many baby stores sell, while they seem like a good idea, in an accident, they can be deadly. I don't know statistics, but I recall seeing repeatedly that these car items are in that category of "safety" things that aren't actually safe. (Like baby positioners...)

    RIP off in an accident? Seriously? That sounds so ridiculous! And it's not aimed at you at all I would just love to see this data. It's not even a real mirror. Honestly I have one, and there is no way it's ripping off in an accident. That would be like saying the rear view mirror could detach in an accident. If it is we would have to be traveling at light speed in which case a mirror ripping off during the accident is probably not our biggest issue.
    Thing 1 (7), Thing 2 (5), Thing 3 (2)

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    I don't know. I just recall reading about it being a hazard so we didn't buy them. That was five years ago, though.

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    So I am aware of the risk but it doesn't stop me from having things in my car. I don't have a "real" trunk in either one of my cars so I feel like there will always be a chance of projectiles due to things being in the back.


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    The verdict is: sit in a bubble and put your children there too.
    I understand sharp objects flying and causing harm but the car is always made from plastic and metal which can rip off and kill you - car seat or not. I think it is not just helicopter parenting, it is a new kind of OCD - OCPD even where p is for parenting.
    But then again - I don't drive. We live in a country where carseats are not a requirement in private cars or taxis. You have more chances here being killed while crossing the road or while riding a bus than anything else.

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    It's a real danger! http://thestir.cafemom.com/baby/1205...y_Cup_Incident

    I saw the article all over the place. Projectiles in a vehicle can be very dangerous. I think that's what caused the initial stir. I personally don't worry too much about projectiles, I mean people grocery shop every day and those can be projectiles in a car accident (I have a van). Things like visors, pieces of glass, pieces of the vehicle itself, can all become projectiles and unfortunately they just can't be avoided.
    Dada (27) Mama-Jessie (26) Orion (4) Kadence (2) Osiris (Uterus)

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    I try to be mindful of loose things in the car, mostly because like Tif, it just drives me nuts to hear things moving around. I drive an SUV, so no separate trunk, and I've got a stroller, an Ergo and a bag of reusable shopping bags back there. Otherwise the only other thing "loose" in the car is my diaper bag. I don't let DS drink or eat when we are driving (mostly due to the fact he makes a mess) or play with anything and he's fine with that. We do have one of those mirrors though and sometimes he takes off his shoes, lol. We live on an island that takes about two hours to drive from end to end, so no long distance car trips here.
    Jennifer


  18. #18

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    I guess we live on the edge. my car is so full of cr@p right now after our road trip this week... oh, who am I kidding? My car is ALWAYS full of cr@p these days!!


    Anne (37) DH (37) Olivia (4) Harrison (1)

  19. #19

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    We don't have a ton in our backseat but, we had a carseat safety class at a local church for baby bucks. James and I both looked at each other like this
    . Of course if we are going to be riding in the car with the kids for a long period they have toys I mean come on. I think each year a society
    of safety nerds get together to add more and more "safety regulations" to make us Americans more and more paranoid. Ah... no wonder 1/4 of people
    will end up with some form of Schizophrenia before age 30. Okay I couldn't help myself but, seriously I do not see a threat of friggin crayons
    being a big danger. I do believe kids should have crayons or small toys to play with. I tend to notice other safety nerds say "Well you got to be prepare
    with snacks, blankets, and water, blah, blah, blah..........................". So if you have a small trunk where is that crap going to go? In the bank seat.

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    This wouldn't have even occurred to me. I don't even restrain the dogs, well sometimes the little one rides in a kennel. And we don't have a trunk either so there is the giant snow brush/ice scrapper. Kind of javelin like. Especially driving a van, I need a huge one to reach to the top. I'm not going to worry about this one too much....have to live and well we like road trips.

    Jennifer, 35, DH 36

  21. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by macksmom View Post
    RIP off in an accident? Seriously? That sounds so ridiculous! And it's not aimed at you at all I would just love to see this data. It's not even a real mirror. Honestly I have one, and there is no way it's ripping off in an accident. That would be like saying the rear view mirror could detach in an accident. If it is we would have to be traveling at light speed in which case a mirror ripping off during the accident is probably not our biggest issue.
    i would have to say that yes a rear view mirror can come off in an accident. when i was about 19 yrs old i was rear-ended, not hard enough to do any visible damage to the bumper of the car but the mirror popped off bounced off the dash and landed on the floor.

    but that has not stopped me from having a messy car. we have tons of stuff in there and a good portion of it is necessary. water bottles, snacks, tools to fix the boat motor on site, toys, clothing for just in case and other stuff that i could probably toss out. i am not concerned about it.


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    I have back-of-the-seat storage pouches. We have the DVD player, not much else except stuffed animals and snacks/drinks. My daughter has her leap pad (she's 4) and my son (he's 1) has a tooth brush and his bottle. Things usually are difficult to keep tied down, but I think as long as you have a tub or a shopping bag that zips, you can take out only a limited number of stuff and close the rest away. Our #1 thing for road trips is the DVD player though!

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    Quote Originally Posted by MamaToe88 View Post
    It's a real danger! http://thestir.cafemom.com/baby/1205...y_Cup_Incident

    I saw the article all over the place. Projectiles in a vehicle can be very dangerous. I think that's what caused the initial stir. I personally don't worry too much about projectiles, I mean people grocery shop every day and those can be projectiles in a car accident (I have a van). Things like visors, pieces of glass, pieces of the vehicle itself, can all become projectiles and unfortunately they just can't be avoided.
    This is very very sad. But really, imo this is classified under "freak accident" and not something that could have been prevented. Ok, it could have been prevented if there was absolutely nothing in the car that can become projectile but that is not realistic. I think that is part of the problem with the internet...it has made freak accidents like this seem common. It's nice to be aware of it and try to be mindful of it but really we can't live our lives worrying about things like this.

    Quote Originally Posted by froggie83 View Post
    i would have to say that yes a rear view mirror can come off in an accident. when i was about 19 yrs old i was rear-ended, not hard enough to do any visible damage to the bumper of the car but the mirror popped off bounced off the dash and landed on the floor.

    but that has not stopped me from having a messy car. we have tons of stuff in there and a good portion of it is necessary. water bottles, snacks, tools to fix the boat motor on site, toys, clothing for just in case and other stuff that i could probably toss out. i am not concerned about it.
    Yes but would you drive without a rear view mirror because it could come off? That is what I mean. This whole thing is kind of silly imo. As I said above it's nice to be aware and to maybe keep your car more tidy knowing it's a possibility but it seems like overkill to even say to not buy a baby mirror because it could RIP and come off in an accident. That is seriously strange imo. Maybe there are styles that are not as secure as others but the one I have is attached with a plastic clip all the way around the headrest. There is no way that thing is coming off! And because of this idea I wonder how many people did not buy a mirror and therefore turned their child FF sooner because of that. That is what makes me so annoyed about hearing this hyper-paranoia. It could be causing you to do something else that is in fact a much bigger, real danger.
    Thing 1 (7), Thing 2 (5), Thing 3 (2)

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    Quote Originally Posted by macksmom View Post
    That is what makes me so annoyed about hearing this hyper-paranoia. It could be causing you to do something else that is in fact a much bigger, real danger.
    Exactly. It's just like the whole thing going around about the dry or secondary drowning making it seem like a common huge danger. I know someone who has been a lifeguard and teaches swimming to kids and because of that article, she has had more than one mom pull the kid from swimming lessons. The parents are so paranoid that instead they pull swimming lessons and will end up with kids afraid of the water and even more likely to panic and drown.

    You cannot prevent every single little thing in life. Worry about bigger and more likely things. Like right now I have a blind cord within reach of the crib in the nursery. You can bet that I will be fixing that and getting that cord well out of reach before a baby is in there. Am I going to stop carrying a snow brush/ice scraper and my big giant umbrella in my van....heck no.

    Jennifer, 35, DH 36

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cosmosmom View Post
    Exactly. It's just like the whole thing going around about the dry or secondary drowning making it seem like a common huge danger. I know someone who has been a lifeguard and teaches swimming to kids and because of that article, she has had more than one mom pull the kid from swimming lessons. The parents are so paranoid that instead they pull swimming lessons and will end up with kids afraid of the water and even more likely to panic and drown.

    You cannot prevent every single little thing in life. Worry about bigger and more likely things. Like right now I have a blind cord within reach of the crib in the nursery. You can bet that I will be fixing that and getting that cord well out of reach before a baby is in there. Am I going to stop carrying a snow brush/ice scraper and my big giant umbrella in my van....heck no.
    So true! I just now heard about the secondary downing I mean I have my kids use life jackets when swimming in a normal pool but, other than being right there, and using sunscreen I will drive myself freaking crazy worrying about every detail.

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    Definitely can't prevent or prepare for each little what-if. But that's what gets us ready - the planning and preparedness that we strive for as parents. The little things we do are not because we are OCD or helicopter parents. But it's because we are educated and dedicated to keeping a low-risk environment for our kids. There will always be that slim chance something will go wrong - it's unavoidable.

  27. #27

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    I absolutely have worried about this. Not so much for day to day travel. We don't keep much in the car, but I do worry about it when I go grocery shopping or when we travel an my trunk (SUV) is full of bags and luggage, which I can see harming someone. I bought a cargo net for my trunk, but haven't figured out how to install it yet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cosmosmom View Post
    Exactly. It's just like the whole thing going around about the dry or secondary drowning making it seem like a common huge danger. I know someone who has been a lifeguard and teaches swimming to kids and because of that article, she has had more than one mom pull the kid from swimming lessons. The parents are so paranoid that instead they pull swimming lessons and will end up with kids afraid of the water and even more likely to panic and drown.

    You cannot prevent every single little thing in life. Worry about bigger and more likely things. Like right now I have a blind cord within reach of the crib in the nursery. You can bet that I will be fixing that and getting that cord well out of reach before a baby is in there. Am I going to stop carrying a snow brush/ice scraper and my big giant umbrella in my van....heck no.
    What people do not understand is that awareness and living in a bubble are 2 different things. We should be aware of secondary drowning symptoms, loose object in cars, safety rules on car seats etc but we shouldn't freak out , just get educated and make smarter choices.

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