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Monthly Archive:: January 2009

Dirty Jobs

Let’s face it – if you’re a neat freak or a germaphobe you’re going to have some issues as a Child Passenger Safety Technician.  I think most of us understand that Cheerios, Goldfish crackers and the occasional french fry are par for the course.  And most of us have kids ourselves so we understand the realities of having food in the vehicle. 

Personally, as much as I’d love to have a no-food-in-vehicle rule that’s just not going to happen.  We spend too much time on the road and the kids (and I) need to snack sometimes when we’re on the go.  However, I do make an attempt to keep the carseats relatively clean and the kids aren’t allowed to eat anything really messy in my van.  I also vacuum the crumbs out of the seats every time I go to the car wash.  Still, I’m always surprised at what accumulates underneath the seats when I occasionally need to take them out.  

With that said, I’ll admit to being totally grossed out by some carseats that I have to work with.  You know the ones I’m talking about….  I wonder how the neat freaks and germaphobes among us deal with these situations?  Do they don the rubber gloves?  Full hazmat suits?  Pretend they have to pee really badly and lock themselves in the nearest bathroom for 20 minutes hoping another tech will deal with it in their absence?       

I had this gem recently at a check event.  The picture really doesn’t do justice to the solidified gooey mess that used up half a container of Lysol wipes.   Can you tell what it was that I had to clean? 

The Economy of It All

Something on the NBC Nightly News the other night caught my attention.  It was a report on how Americans are cutting back on healthcare expenses to the detriment of their health.  11% are cutting back on their prescriptions or splitting pills, even patients with insurance.  Some are taking their daily meds every other day or every few days.  They simply can’t afford to care for themselves and keep food on the table or pay for the house each month.  These are folks with serious diseases like diabetes or kidney disease who should be maintaining themselves with the utmost of care.  36% are skipping doctors’ appointments, waiting until they become extremely ill before seeking medical care.  All because of the expense.  When they do this, in the end, it actually makes their care more expensive because the preventative measures haven’t taken place and they oftentimes end up in the hospital with more intensive care.

Evenflo Express/Chase as Booster (Part I – Combo Seat Review Series)

I’ve decided to document how various combination (harness/booster) seats fit my 4 year old, 41 lb, 43″ tall son in booster mode.  He’s at the size where most parents would be switching from the 5-pt harness to  the vehicle’s lap/shoulder belt in booster mode if they had a combination seat with a 40 lb limit on the harness.  In each case I’ll use the same seating position in my van – driver’s side captain’s chair in a 2005 Ford Freestar.

The IIHS booster study compared the fit of various boosters using the 6-year-old Hybrid lll dummy who weighs 51.6 lbs (23.41 kg) and has a standing height of almost 45″.  I thought it would be even better to show belt fit on a child who was just over the 40 lb weight limit for the 5-pt harness.  I’ve decided to focus exclusively on combination seats because of their popularity with parents of children in the 2-5 age group.

First up - the Evenflo Chase/Express/Vision/Traditions combination seat. 

PetBuckle Seat Belt Harness

I have a smallish mutt at 21 lbs. and besides not wanting her to become a projectile should we be in a crash, she tends to fly around the van when I take my corners on two wheels.  I’ve always secured my dogs when I drive by using a normal harness on them and knotting their leash tightly to a head restraint post, but I know it’s not the safest.

SafeGuard GO: On Sale!

We’ve just learned of a nice offer on a child restraint we like, the SafeGuard Go Hybrid Booster, featured previously in a review at CarseatBlog.

Our friends at EliteCarSeats.Com are having a special offer on the Go.  It’s already on sale for $50 off its normal price there.  Plus, you can use the promotion coupon code “gobabygo” to get an extra 10% off the Go at checkout!  If you’re looking for a great travel option (I still use mine for day-to-day use!), please visit their product information page about the SafeGuard Go.  There is currently a free shipping offer, too, while supplies last!

EliteCarSeats is a proud sponsor of our Car-Seat.Org forums and we hope to partner with them for some giveaways this year, too.  Please check out their website if you are shopping for baby gear!