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Diatribe: Keep Your Keys In Your Pocket And Your Children Safe.


KEYSWhen our kids were little, we rarely let them out of our sight.  Some might say that we were over protective but the truth is our kids were always safe.  Fortunately, they enjoyed being with us so it was never difficult to keep a close eye on them.  Plus, to our great fortune and eternal gratefulness, they were simply good kids.  We were particularly careful with our children when it came to travel.

House Rules dictated that a vehicle’s engine would not be started until every passenger was safely buckled into their seat.  Windows were never rolled down without permission and we made a point to agree on what music, if any, we would listen to.  We never left the kids in the car unattended and we kept close tabs on our keys.  We never gave them to the kids to play with or used them to distract them like we’d seen other parents do.  Keys were not toys.

Sadly, parents in Westmore, Texas, about forty-eight miles northeast of Dallas lost a baby daughter yesterday when she was run over by their truck.  Moments before the accident, her four-year-old brother got into the truck and shifted the gears into neutral.

“The initial Investigation determined the female child was killed instantly.  The family was loading a pickup with items to take to a relative’s house.  The truck was backed up in the driveway to a side door to the residence.  A 4-year-old sibling of the victim got the keys to the truck and got inside and started it.  The father was inside the house getting items to take to the truck when he heard it start.  He ran to the door and saw the truck rolling forward towards the neighbors’ fence.  He ran after the truck to stop it.  The truck rolled into the fence and stopped.” – Collin County Lt. John Norton in a statement to the media.

This is a tragedy beyond my comprehension.  Clearly, these children were not supervised to the extent that I would watch my own kids but, without knowing the circumstances of the accident, it’s impossible to place blame.  Hopefully, parents around the world will learn from this terrible accident and remember to keep a close eye on their children and their keys in their pockets.


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From → Diatribes

  1. What a horribly tragic event!


  2. Our primary car has a backup TV with a wide angle lens and yet, I’m ashamed to admit, I sometimes fail to check it before backing out of the garage. Not that it’s likely any tots will be there, it just seems like a habit one should accrue. Our second car is a low-slung two seater with better visibility over the back, but there again one should look around before getting into the driver’s seat and backing up.

    I can’t help but detect some smugness in your first paragraph where you say, ” . . . our kids were always safe.” Maybe so, but in my 5 decades as an adult I have made enough mistakes through distraction and overconfidence to know that nobody is immune to such things. In fact, I would say that distractions are more of a problem today than perhaps they have ever been, and that’s because of smart phones and social media. And every summer, it seems, I read of somebody leaving an infant in the back of a hot car.

    Thanks for a horrifying and timely reminder to never relax.


    • Oops. I certainly didn’t mean to sound smug. Our kids were little passengers many years ago, before cellphones and even CD players were found in cars, and looking back I believe that we really did take great pains to ensure their safety. Back then, as drivers our kids were our biggest distraction! Sure, there were times when we exceeded the speed limit on the interstate but as soon as those kids were old enough to see over the back seat, and understand what a speedometer was for, they began to good-naturedly police our driving!

      Thanks for reading!


  3. This breaks your heart. When I think back on my kids growing up, there were times when they did something stupid but were not hurt, but they could have been. It truly only takes an instant. What also hurts are these tragic gun deaths where a child finds a weapon where it should not be and an x year old kills a z year old. We can not be too careful with kids and things that are dangerous. Take care, BTG


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