My concern – babies can be seriously injured if they fall off a shopping cart. And it happens – we see kids in our emergency room rather frequently for these injuries. We actually see 1-2 cases a month!
People are always surprised when I give presentations about car seats and mention that car seats are made for traveling – not for sleeping or putting in shopping carts. We see people do it all the time so we think it’s safe – right?
The issue is that infant car seats are not designed to securely fit on top of shopping cart. Most car seat manufacturers specifically prohibit using their seats in shopping carts – but who takes the time (maybe other than me and other car seat nerds) to read the car seat instructions front to back?
Since car seats aren’t designed for shopping cart travel they are often unstable. One good bump of the cart – or even worse – bumper cars in aisle 4 – and baby is on the ground.
My quick fix: Don’t put the car seat on top of the shopping cart!
Okay – I know we have to be realistic as well. I’ve had to shop with an infant. Here are some suggestions to limit a shopping cart wreck.
- Place the infant seat in the main portion of the cart. I’ve done this – it’s a great way to limit how much I purchase (you know how thrifty I am). If you have a long grocery list you may need to grab another shopping cart – yes you may look a little silly but I’d prefer looking silly to a trip to the emergency department (especially since I would be visiting my colleagues who read this blog).
- Try to find one of the carts that have a built-in carrier. I’ve found these to be hit or miss. Some have weight restrictions and if the harness is missing or broken don’t use it. I would also suggest bringing a light receiving blanket to put under baby – don’t know how often these are cleaned.
- Enroll Dad or another support system! My weekly trip to the grocery store is my quiet time – Dad knows he won’t get fed if I don’t go and the trade-off is that he has kid duty. This way I avoid the problem all together!
Here’s to safe travels down the cereal aisle!