Mum’s warning about booster seats: “I saw the car, and my heart stopped”

Posted in Safety.

Once kids get to around seven years of age, they feel ready to throw the booster seat out of the car.

Nine-year-old Braeden was such a child. Fortunately, his mum never gave in and after a recent accident, she’s now warning others to do the same.

Jen McLellan, the host of Plus Mommy podcast, revealed on Facebook that her husband and nine-year-old son, Braeden, were in an awful car accident. However, thanks to his booster seat, Braeden walked away with only minor injuries – much to the amazement of paramedics.

Wrong place, wrong time

According to Today, Braeden and his dad, Chris, were off to a friend’s home in Albuquerque, New Mexico, when the SUV ran a red light and t-boned them.

“On Sunday I received the phone call you never want to get – a call from my husband that he and my son had been in a terrible car accident,” Jen wrote on Facebook. “I didn’t freak out until I arrived on the scene and couldn’t see my son. I finally saw him covered in a red drink, and for a few seconds, I mistook it for something else. Then I saw the car, and my heart stopped.”

Judging from the picture posted on Facebook, it’s clear that the accident was indeed terrible. But while the car suffered enormous damage, Braeden was able to walk away.

Boosters save lives

Things might have been very different if Braeden had not been securely strapped into his correctly installed booster, which, according to Today, was an Evenflo AMP high back seat. Paramedics were surprised to see how well Braeden came out of the accident and said it could have been a lot worse if he hadn’t been in a booster seat.

“The paramedics said how they don’t often see kids Braeden’s size doing so well after an accident like this,” Jen says. “His chest and neck bruising show how the booster kept him at the appropriate height. Had he not been in a booster, the seat belt would have been at his neck and face.”

Later at the ER, and in follow-up appointments with their paediatrician, the sentiment was much the same – “Thank goodness he was in a booster!”

Jen has previously struggled to convince Braeden of the importance of the booster but luckily, she stood her ground.

“I can’t tell you how many arguments I’ve had with my 9-year-old about him not wanting to be in a booster because his friends don’t use one,” she wrote. “I’m forever thankful I never budged.”

Warning to others

Jen’s Facebook post drew a massive response and was shared 2,500 times. The mum is so grateful for how things turned out and is taking to social media to warn others of the danger of taking kids out of boosters too soon.

“I have one thing to ask of everyone reading this – keep your children in boosters for as long a possible,” she wrote. “Please let that be the good that can come of this. More awareness of how essential boosters are for bigger kids – even if they don’t think they are cool!!!!”

It’s certainly a chilling way to have learnt a most important lesson and is definitely some food for thought. My eight-year-old daughter is well and truly out of the booster – she couldn’t wait … but now I’m thinking that maybe I’ll retrieve it from the attic and pop it back in the car.


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