When looking to purchase a stroller for your baby or toddler, your number one concern should be safety. Not all strollers are that safe and it’s up to you – not the manufacturer – to ensure that the stroller you want to buy has all the necessary safety features. Here is a guide on how to find a safe stroller for your child.
The first thing you should do is check to see if the stroller you are considering has JPMA certification. JPMA, which stands for the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association, is an association that tests and certifies baby products to make sure they are safe. Some baby stroller manufacturers that are JPMA certified include Britax, Bugaboo, Graco and Maclaren.
Although JPMA certification is a good indication of safety, you should also conduct your own personal research. Look up reviews of strollers online, read the label and conduct your own tests. One of the safety features you should look for is seat belts. It’s a good idea to have a seat belt in case your child decides to try to get out of the stroller and accidentally topples the whole thing over while climbing out. And even if a toddler is able to climb out safely, you don’t want them toddling away while you’re not looking. The best seat belts are either three or five point safety harnesses.
The stroller should also be stable and have good brakes. Go to the store and actually test out the stroller to make sure it meets your safety criteria. A stable stroller will have a wide wheel base so it won’t tip over accidentally, and if it has a storage basket, the basket should be positioned low on the stroller frame. The wheel brakes should lock so the stroller will not roll down a shallow incline. When looking into a stroller that can be folded up, make sure that all moving parts are able to lock into place. Otherwise, your curious toddler may get his fingers accidentally crushed when he sticks them in the wrong place.
If you’re going to be using the stroller for a very young infant, you should have the ability to position the baby facing you so you can always see the child. Otherwise, someone could easily grab the baby out of the stroller when you have your back turned and you’d be none the wiser until three blocks later when you check to see why the baby hasn’t uttered a peep. Also, a stroller for an infant should have a seat that can fully recline – young infants are not able to keep themselves propped up.
Just remember – even though you may have the safest stroller in the world, all of those safety features will mean nothing if you don’t utilize them properly. Always make sure to put your baby’s seat belt on, don’t let kids play around with the stroller and if you’re parking the stroller, put the wheel brakes on so it can’t roll away.
Gary Kohler contributed this article. He is a writer for the life insurance comparison site LifeCover. For more information about LifeCover visit their site today.