Car seat ensures children are safe

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Fortunately, news involving a child or pet being left in a vehicle during the summer heat isn’t very common in Pearl River County.

For the most part, parents put forth every effort to protect their children.

However there have been national stories involving a parent who said they forgot their child was in the car, which turned out to be a fatal mistake.

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To curb incidents such as these, a new car seat will soon be released to the market, which will have a built in alarm.

The device works by utilizing a wireless signal that connects to a receiver, which is plugged into the diagnostic port on your vehicle.

Every vehicle made after 1995 has a universal diagnostic port, which is located under the dash on the driver’s side of the cabin. It’s typically used by automotive technicians and do-it-yourselfers to read codes from the vehicle’s on board computer to determine why the “check engine” light is on.

But by connecting a special dongle to this port, the on board computer will allow this device to detect if the vehicle has been turned off, but the buckle on the seat is still engaged. When this occurs, an alarm sounds on the seat, alerting the parent that the child is still in the vehicle.

The idea is novel, but some may consider its need to be excessive, especially when parenthood is primarily about responsibility.

However, in this busy world it is better to be safe than sorry. Every ounce of prevention can go a long way to ensuring every child is protected.

While this is a novel idea for children, it does not address the same need for pets.

If a similar device could be developed to detect when a pet is left in a hot vehicle, then heat related injuries to both children and pets could be avoided.