Transporting Children Safely

Do you or the families you serve transport children? Review performance standards for transporting children safely in early care and education programs. Share this information with parents who transport their children in vehicles other than a public bus. The model policy is consistent with Caring for Our Children: National Health and Safety Performance Standards.

The American Academy of Pediatrics now recommends that all infants and toddlers ride in rear-facing car safety seats until they are 2 years old or until they reach the highest weight or height allowed by the manufacturer of their car seat. The AAP also recommends that a child continues to use a belt-positioned booster seat until the vehicle lap-and-shoulder belt fits properly. This typically occurs when the child has reached 4 feet 9 inches in height and is between 8 and 12 years of age. 

 A standard from Caring for our Children recommends that drivers check the vehicle before and after each trip for children who might be hiding in, under and behind the vehicle.  The driver needs to lock the vehicle after it has been emptied and checked.  A staff member should count the children before the vehicle leaves, when the children arrive at a destination, when they enter the vehicle at the trip location and when they return to the facility.  A staff member should conduct a "sweep" of the vehicle every time it is parked to be sure that no child is left in the vehicle.  

Reaffirmed 7/2021