It is not uncommon to worry about the safety of your baby when driving, especially with new parents. However, the inevitable anxiety can quickly interfere with your driving skills. To help make sure your baby is as safe and protected as possible, here are 7 safety tips from our West Virginia car accident lawyers that will help your drive safely and worry less about your baby.

1. Using and Installing the Right Car Seat

There are many types and styles of car seats so it can be tricky to choose which seat is right for you. Infant seats, convertibles, full-sized boosters, and backless boosters are readily available at box stores and baby stores. Choose a seat that is right for the size of your child, has good safety ratings, and fits properly into your car. Not all seats are designed to fit all cars, so ask if you can have a test installation before buying a seat. Children from birth to 3 years old may require a rear-facing car seat.

The next step up is a forward-facing seat that can be suitable for children anywhere from 2-7 years old. When your child outgrows the forward-facing seat, they should use a booster seat until they can properly fit into a seat belt. Installing the car seat properly is just as important as having the correct seat. Read the manufacturer’s installation instructions carefully. Place the car seat in the back seat and secure it. It should not be able to move front-to-back or side-to-side more than 1 inch when pulled at the belt path. For rear-facing seats, make sure the correct recline angle is used, most seats are labeled to determine the correct angle. For forward-facing seats, connect it to the tether strap and be sure it is tightened to limit movement during an accident.

2. Feed and Change Before Driving

When a baby starts fussing your instinct is to immediately take your eyes off the road and look at your baby. While babies are unpredictable and accidents can happen at any time, it is best to feed and change your baby before you get in the car. If it is possible, try and time your trips around their nap times, or when they are tired. Also, never try to feed your baby when driving. Pullover first.

3. Be a Defensive Driver

Defensive driving means you are prepared to react to the unexpected, all while staying alert and maintaining a safe speed.

4. Use a Sunshade

Install a sunshade to the window closest to your baby. This will help keep the sun out of the baby’s eyes, as well as keep light out when they are sleeping. Sunshades are also a great way to help maintain the temperature in the vehicle.

5. Get a Backseat Mirror

Install a mirror in the back seat so you can see your child with a quick glance in the rearview mirror. However, don’t use this as an excuse to keep making eye contact with your baby. Being able to see the infant will help keep you from being stressed out and the mirror will keep you from turning around to check on them and taking your eyes off the road.

6. Have Co-Pilot

If possible, it is always nice to have someone that can either drive you while you sit in the back, or they sit in the back with the baby. This way they can take care of your kid while you focus on driving. This may not always be possible, but if it is it will help keep you much more relaxed and your baby much quieter.

7. Turn Off Your Phone

It’s never ok to talk and drive and worse to text and drive. When you also have a baby to think about, not much of your brain is left for concentrating on the road. Turn your phone off all together, rather than using hands-free or screen-based systems. It is just too much distraction for anyone to cope with. Best place to put your phone? The back seat next to your baby. New parents forget their child is there all the time, because it’s not part of the routine yet, and this is how babies get left in cars.

You are the key to making sure your family and passengers are safe on the road. This means it is all the more important to be rested, drive defensively, and remove other distractions such as your cellphone from the equation. If you or a loved one has been injured and would like to talk with one of our experienced personal injury attorneys, contact us for a free consultation!


Attorney Timothy Manchin established the Manchin Injury Law Group in 2011 after his law partner of more than 25 years became a West Virginia circuit court judge. His focus is on helping individual clients and entire families victimized by negligent acts.

  • Taylor Downs was easy to talk to (I do not speak the legal language well!) and was very upfront and honest about the entire process of my case. He kept me updated as the case progressed, and answered my relentless questions. The end result was a favorable settlement that I’m not sure could have been any better with anyone else. In short, go see Taylor if you have a case. Don’t be intimidated to go seek his help, he won’t blow your brains out with “legal speak”.


  • Being referred to Taylor was the best thing I could have asked for. Taylor and staff are very easy to talk to. I would highly recommend them to anyone.


  • If I ever have to go through it again I would definetly call Taylor right away. The group was so helpful through my situation and handled everything that needed to be done. They made a stressful situation a stress free situation. With Taylor you dont have to worry about one thing. Definietly would recomend to anyone.

    - TAYLOR G.

  • Efficient, knowledgeable, and friendly.


  • Taylor and Tim helped make a difficult moment in life, a little more bearable. Easy to communicate with and informative. I will absolutely recommend them to everyone.


  • Manchin Injury Law Group, Took care of me when I got into a car accident while I was pregnant. Very scary moment for a first time mom but thankfully Manchin Injury Law Group had my back and treated me great. They made me feel as if I was part of their family. My son is now 7 Months Old and very happy and healthy. I’m very thankful for them for helping me through everything and getting me what we deserved. I 100% would recommend them to anyone. If I ever have an accident again they will be my number 1 phone call!


  • The support given helped me to feel like I was included in my personal injury case every step of the way. I was informed about the entire process throughout. It was amazing how quick the turn around time was and I would definitely recommend Attorney Timothy J. Manchin to anyone!


  • Taylor and Kelly worked hard on my case so I didn’t have to. Thanks guys!


  • Excellent experience dealing with Manchin Injury Law. They were very responsive, professional and easy to talk to. I did my homework before I hired a lawyer after my accident and I am so glad I found Manchin Injury Law Group. If you are injured, give them a call!


  • Taylor and Tim helped make a difficult moment in life, a little more bearable. Easy to communicate with and informative. I will absolutely recommend them to everyone.


  • Kelly and Taylor did all the hard work so that I didn’t have to. They both cared about my circumstance and got me a nice settlement. Taylor knows what he is doing and I felt comfortable with my case in his hands.


  • Great lawyers. They helped me with a West Virginia case.


  • Such a great experience with Taylor and this firm. Thankful for their diligence and their work on our case. Thank you to all!


  • Had a easy and smooth experience with a great attorney so when you go there make sure you ask for Taylor.


  • My experience at the Manchin Injury Law Group was extremely positive, and I would recommend them to anyone who needs a compassionate and experienced lawyer on their side.


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