As a mum, I’m wired to be safety conscious of my kids every minute and every hour of the day. Most of the time I’m in situations where I have control over this – however one of my main areas of concern is being out on the road. As with most parents, the majority of our driving consists of taking the kids to school, visiting family or doing the weekly shop. I was reading a recent survey conducted by All Car Leasing – a contract hire and leasing firm based here in the UK which looked into the habits and priorities of parents when driving with their babies. Thinking about the results, I realised just how frequent accidents can happen along with how fortunate I’ve been to never experience something quite as significant when it comes to driving. A key aspect to the study was how long it would take parents to feel comfortable driving with their child alone following the birth. For me personally, when I first had Stanley, I was nervous about taking him in my car or any car for that matter just in case anything were to happen, but you find that you must embrace it to be able to go and do your everyday things. By the time I had Wilfred, it was second nature to pop the kids in the car anyway and the same with Mabel. However, I can agree with the study because It took me a few weeks to feel comfortable driving with a new born, as with most parents who answered the study.
According to the data, one in four parents have experienced some form of car accident and those parents’ biggest concern when driving is other drivers, which is quite scary really… I share the same opinion – though half the time I’m in slower moving traffic- so thankfully it’s rare that I experience driving I’d consider reckless; if I do it’s normally when I’m on the motorway. The statistics are even more worrying for 25 – 34 year olds, as apparently 37% of those young parents had experienced an accident whilst their baby was in the car! Before my kids were born, I’d always been confident on the road, but something changed when it wasn’t just me and my husband in the car. Kids can be a bit irritable in their earlier years and don’t always feel comfortable in their seats or will start screaming which can be really distracting, it could put me at further risk of having an accident.
One of the more interesting elements of the study is that two thirds of first-time parents will buy a new car when their baby is on the way. I suppose in the same way I spent time researching and choosing which pram or carrier to buy, cars could also almost be treated as a baby product. I agree with the three main reasons these parents bought their cars – safety aside, reliability and fuel economy are important to me as it helps keep our monthly spends under control.
Written in collaboration with All Car Leasing