Child Safety Seats in the Age of Ride Sharing
Recently I’ve noticed an increase in the number of pediatric patients involved in MVCs while using a ride-sharing service. Just as traumas are typical in emergency rooms, injury prevention and motor vehicle safety are standard fares in public health. To introduce this topic, take a look at this video produced by Arizona 15, in January 2018:
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This piece highlights that Lyft and Uber drivers and riders routinely ignore Arizona law, putting children at risk.
“In Arizona, state law requires children younger than8 years old or less than 4 feet 9 inches tall sit in a proper child safety seat. No excuses.”
What’s the solution?
When using the Uber app, choose UberX and request “CAR SEAT,” located above the UberX option. Be aware that a $10 surcharge will apply. Vehicles will arrive with one forward-facing car seat, and two booster seats and families can request up to two BubbleBum booster seats.
Lyft uses the IMMI Go car seat, but currently only in New York City.
It’s often difficult to find time to counsel families before they present with a significant motor vehicle crash. As ridesharing services grow in popularity, motor vehicle safety will continue to be a key, preventable health risk for our pediatric patients. When pediatric traumas present, do you or your team follow up with the family to ask about car seat and booster seat usage? When you’re surveying a pediatric trauma do you listen for or ask about pediatric restraints during report? When you’re hanging out with friends who love to use ride-sharing services and have just entered parenthood, are you ever curious about their experiences?
The next time you feel that twinge as a pediatric patient rolls into your ED after an MVC, consider what role public health interventions like properly installed child seats may play in treating your next patient before they ever arrive.
Phoenix Fire and Police offer resources regarding correctly installing child safety seats. More information can be found below:
Biscobing, D. (2018, January 16). No car seat? ‘No problem’: Uber, Lyft drivers breaking Arizona child car seat laws. Retrieved from https://www.abc15.com/longform/lyft-uber-car-seat-law
Kelleher, S. R. (2017, December 27). How to Get a Car Seat with Your Uber. Retrieved July 5, 2018, from https://www.tripsavvy.com/getting-car-seats-with-your-uber-3267670
Lyft, Inc. (n.d.). Car seat mode. Retrieved July 5, 2018, from https://help.lyft.com/hc/en-us/articles/360000722107-Car-seat-mode
Uber Car Seat. (n.d.). Retrieved July 5, 2018, from https://help.uber.com/h/3abcbae1-132b-42a9-8277-0dab00fa3879