Post # 1
News broke yesterday of a local woman who left her almost 2 year old in the car for 15+ minutes while she ran into a store. It was over 80 degrees out which means that it was even warmer inside the car. Another shopper saw the child and called the police who later charged the mother with endangering the welfare of a child and reckless endangerment.
This got me thinking about if it’s ever okay to leave a child alone in a car. Obviously what this mother did was wrong in every sense of the word but what about at a gas station when you’ll be in and out in a matter of seconds (hopefully) or some other location where you won’t be gone long. Is it ever okay?
ETA: Let’s say the kid is under 5 just for arguements sake.
Post # 3
IMO, it is never ok, I never did it. I’ve heard too many horror stories, I never took a chance for even one second when my son was young. Nope, never.
Post # 4
I’ll answer my own question even though I’m not a parent…
It’s not something that I’d personally do (although I always pay at the pump so I don’t think it would ever be an issue for me) but I’m sure plenty of parents do it without really thinking. Actually, I’ve witnessed this on many occasions but never thought much of it. I’ve seen mothers of small children run into a gas station to pay and leave their sleeping kids in the car. It seems like such a hassle to wake your child just for a few seconds but I guess it is the safest and most responsible option.
Post # 6
I would say it’s only okay if you are somewhere where you can see the kid at all times. For example, if you had to run to a friends house to pick something up, just go to the door and get it but the kid can stay with the AC on. Never if the car is completely off and you are going inside somewhere. Too many freak things can happen.
Post # 8
Never! I hate seeing or hearing this! Once My SO and I called the cops on this lady at the pet store. There was a 2 year old a infant ( under a year old) and a 5 year old all in the car. It was 92 degrees out! The cops told me to go over to the car and ask the older child to un lock the doors and he did, I had them sitting out side of the car in the shade with me, the lady didnt come out for 45 MINS! The infant was sweating hot.
I dont think its ever ok. My sister runs into the gas station she brings her kids in with her, yes its a hassel but she would rather do that then have one of them get hurt. God forbid a car slammed into the car with the children in it!
Post # 9
- Wedding: April 2012 - St. Philip Catholic Church/Arcadia Brewing Co.
I don’t think it is ok to leave a 2 year old in the car, but if the child is old enough to get out on their own if they need to (say 6 or 7) I think it’s fine. Also, outdoor temperature plays a huge roll. I would not leave any child in a car on a hot day but if it is mild, and I’ll be quick, and the child knows to never open the door for any stranger, not matter what, I think it would be ok.
When I was a kid there were lots of times I would stay in the car reading or playing while my mom ran in places. But that was different from leaving a toddler in a car seat.
Post # 10
Never! I’m not even as concerned with the heat as I am with strangers. I don’t agree with anyone who wants to put their child in a situation where they could be injured or kidnapped.
Post # 11
Never a small child. Never ever. But if the kid is like, say 10 years old or something… well yeah, go ahead and pre-pay at the gas station.
Post # 12
No it’s not ok. Someone could steal your car without realizing a sleeping baby is in the back–it’s happened before
Post # 13
It really depends on their age. I wouldn’t want to leave a baby in the car but if the kid is older than 5 I don’t see what the problem is if it is seriously just 1-2 minutes, like running into a convenience store or a gas station to pay for something. Anything that could take longer than 5-10 minutes is no bueno imo.
I remember when I was 8 my friend’s Mom left us in her old car to run inside to 7-11 for something. She forgot to put the parking brake on and the car started rolling backwards, all of a sudden this lady is screaming “THAT CAR IS ROLLING WITH KIDS IN IT” and the lady hops in the car and pulls the brake. It was hilarious. Anyway, I think older elementary school age kids do just fine being left in the car for a few, as long as it is locked and the parking brake is on.
Post # 14
I wouldnt really consider the child unattended if I could see him/her at all times. My vote was yes, for a second if my eyes are on him/her at all times. But leave my child out of sight for even a second? hell no.
Post # 15
I think running into the gas station is a little different than a shopping trip. I have left my child in the car when there was a problem at the pump and I had to run inside real quick. I do pay at the pump, but sometimes it doesn;t go through or it stops early, what do you do then?Anything else my child would not be left in the car.
Post # 16
I would rather wake my sleeping child up and carry him into a gas station that risk the dangers of leaving him unattended. The “hassel” is a thousand times better than any potentional danger. Even aside from the issue of the temps in the car, people are freaking crazy! If you’re leaving your kids in the car unattended, you may as well post a sign on the car saying “free to any psychos who happen to be paing attention!”