As you prepare for that inevitable road trip coming up with the holidays, there’s probably a million things on your checklist. Is your pet one of them? A lot of times we get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life and the safety of our dog can get lost among the list. After all, they are our most precious cargo, so make sure you keep in mind their comfort and safety when traveling. People travel with their pets all the time, and more often than not you see a dog pacing between windows in the back seat, their heads sticking out of the window with not a care in the world, and sometimes even nestled in a truck bed. As much as your dog may love or hate car rides, enlighten yourself on what measures you can take to ensure their safety. There are so many what-ifs that can happen when driving with your beloved pet. What if your dog falls out of the open window when you turn? What if your dog jumps out of your truck bed? What if you get in a wreck? Not to be a debbie downer, but these what-ifs actually happen. An unsecured dog can become a distraction, interfere with your safety, and even escape if given the chance. Flying debris or unforeseen objects can severely injure your dog’s eyes or head when left to gaze out of the window. If you happen to get in a wreck or suddenly stop, your loose dog becomes a flying missile and can suffer from many broken bones, or worse. So, heir on the side of caution and make sure your dog is just as safe and secure as a child passenger would be. Secure your pet while driving to be prepared for those what-ifs. You wouldn’t let your child ride without a carseat or a seatbelt, so why let your dog? There are many options you can pursue to ensure the safety of your pet. From simply securing their crate in the trunk to using a barrier or car animal restraint, look here to find out what would best suit you and your furry friend. If you are one of the guilty ones of letting your pet ride loosely (we all are at some point), now you know what a risk that actually poses! So take care of your precious cargo on those drives to ensure their safety, along with yours.
Behind the Wheel December 20, 2013
Alrighty, folks! I don’t necessarily think this is a debate, but I thought I’d enlighten y’all on the differences between lap belts and shoulder restraints when it comes to seatbelt safety. First off, a lap belt is simply the strap that goes across your waist, or lap, while a shoulder restraint not only has the lap belt, but also a strap coming down from your left or right shoulder and diagonally crossing your chest. Now I’m totally team shoulder restraint. Why? Here are some facts that might scare you… (sorry):
- “Seat Belt Syndrome. Seat Belt Syndrome, or SBS, is a phrase that was originally coined by the medical community in the late 1950s and early 1960s to describe injuries that physicians were seeing as a result of occupants wearing lap-belt-only restraints in frontal collisions. These injuries typically include: (1) severe abdominal injuries, (2) fractures of the lumbar spine, and (3) serious closed head and facial injuries. These injuries are primarily the result of the occupant’s body jackknifing over the lap belt, at the waist, during the collision. Under such circumstances, the lap belt causes extreme force to be applied along the pelvis to the mid-section of the occupant. Securing the waist without securing the upper torso leads to increased head and neck velocities, which can cause serious head and neck injuries following either a head strike or inertial loading of the spine. A majority of these injuries can be prevented by the installation of an integrated three-point belt or other upper-torso restraint. (http://www.mobar.net/journal/1999/mayjun/langdon.htm)
- “Kathleen Weber’s research paper “Crash Protection for Child Passengers” says:
- The question of fatality reduction effectiveness of rear-seat lap vs. lap/shoulder belts has recently been addressed in an extensive double-pair analysis by Morgan in which children of age 5 through 14 were included and evaluated separately. The conclusions for rear-outboard occupants in this age group are that lap-belted children were 38% less likely to die than unrestrained children, while lap/ shoulder-belted children were less likely by 52%. The lap/shoulder belt was found to reduce fatalities 26% over lap belts alone for children 5 through 14 in all crashes and 31% in frontal crashes, and children derived more relative benefit from the lap/shoulder belt than did the adult groups. Further analysis with supplemental cause of death data indicated that both types of belted children were somewhat more likely to receive abdominal injuries than unrestrained children, but the increase for the adult groups in lap belts was much greater. Finally, both belt systems markedly reduced fatal head injuries, but these were still twice as likely among lap-belted than lap/shoulder-belted children. This study makes it clear that shoulder belt use is very beneficial for older children.”
The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute has found that “text messaging creates a crash risk 23 times worse than driving while not distracted.” It breaks my heart to know that people are so willing to put themselves into danger and not even think twice about it. That’s why I’m happy to share some HUGE news! McCarthy Auto is teaming up with PrepsKC to Take The Pledge To Not Text & Drive. Too many people are texting and driving these days, and it’s not okay. Our goal is a simple one: Starting October 1 through October 31st, fans have the opportunity to log onto PrepsKC.com and take the pledge to not text and drive. That pledge is a promise to never be on your phone while behind the wheel, as well as a promise to encourage all within your social reach to do the same. In addition to this pledge, you’ll also have the opportunity to vote for your favorite Kansas City-area high school’s football program. At 5:00 p.m. on October 31, the school with the most pledges will win $5,000 for its football program, courtesy of the McCarthy Auto Group. More than anything, though, we want you all to be safe on the road. If even one accident from texting and driving is avoided, we’ll consider our campaign a success. The contest starts Oct. 1 and you’re able to vote up to three times per day per IP address! All you’re going to have to do is go to www.prepskc.com (look for the ad at the top right part of the page!) and vote, vote, vote! Take a gander at what you’ll start seeing October 1st below! 🙂
Driving along, I often wonder about that split second before an accident occurs … does your life really flash before you? does the shock draw a blank? What about your vehicle; what’s it thinking? With all the recent safety features and specs, it’s a fact – cars are safer to drive these days. According to the United States Transportation Department, deaths resulting from highway accidents are lower. Thank goodness! Some positive news! Not only do vehicles provide better safety equipment; drivers are wearing their seat belts more often and staying off the road after alcohol consumption. Smart move, I’d say! Read more about Highway deaths fall to lowest level since 1949, a report The Today Show posted recently. Vehicles on the rode today offer far more advanced technology; to keep us safe. Standard features like ‘front and rear crumple zones’ and ‘energy-absorbing steering column’ to absorb some of the impact when in an accident. Other features like ‘traction control’ and ‘electronic stability control’ which help prevent the accident from occurring. And ‘on-star automatic crash response & emergency services’ if in fact you are in an accident and need immediate assistance. It’s nice to know your car is thinking of you … and your safety!