Monday, March 20, 2006

oh shit

This morning I went to the supermarket nice and early - thanks end of daylight savings. While I was loading the assortment of frozen meals into the car, there was heaps of tooting.

A woman pulled up to me and said "watch out, there are a couple of kids in that car with car keys". It was the car behind mine, and there were 2 kids, about 2 and 4, clambouring around.

The guy with curly hair from What Now, circa 1984, was getting out of the car next to mine, and went and checked to see if the kids did have car keys. They did, and the car was unlocked. I decided to stick around and make sure nobody abducted them. Not long after, their mother came back. In a parallel universe where there was no frenzied killing sprees from pissed off parents, I may have said something.

Anyhow, she pulled out, and I was behind her. She turned off the Esplanade, so I thought I'd follow and see where she was going. She pulled up outside Finn's kindy.

Her son was in the front seat, and the wee girl had vanished, so I guess was sitting on the floor in the back. There weren't any kids carseats.

They were an asian family. I guess there are cultural differences in terms of child restraints and leaving kids in the car. But all kids have the potential to climb out of cars, or start them, or the car gets stolen while they're in it.

I don't know why I'm writing about it, but I sort of feel like maybe I should do something - recommend a newletter about safety from kindy? There are quite a few non-english speaking families at kindy, and the teachers find it difficult to get messages across, so it wouldn't necessarily work. And I don't want to be a snakey busy-body. And I don't want her kids to go flying through the windscreen when someone rear-ends her.


llew said...

Last weekend I left my nephews in the car for about a minute, while I popped into another house to grab a bike rack... it was a busy street so I decided to lock them in knowing thatI'd only be 30 seconds or so...

I was only 30-60 seconds, but no sooner had I got down the steps to get the rack, I heard the car alarm go off... silly me, I forgot the motion sensor...

The boys were impressed though.

A said...


Sorry you had to see that. As a Mum just doing nothing isn't really an option is it :o(

Could you mention the incident to the head teacher at the Kindy and see if the teacher thinks it's worth bringing up with the mother?
Or...perhaps a visit by the local constabulary to the kind to reinforce the law (gently to the kids) might be in order?...Then again...if they don't speak much English...

Ya know, if I'd been angered by what I saw I'd probably tell the police all the details and let them handle it.
Not only are the children at risk, but the poor bugger rear ending might end up with a badly injured, or worse, kid on his conscience instead of a bruised and shaken restrained one.

Martha said...

If I'd had my phone on me I would have called the cops. It would have been nice and simple then.

I have left the kids in the car when I've gone to the ATM machine, but the supermarket is miles away from where the car was parked.

Dodderyoldfart said...

We see quite a lot of unrestrained kids clambering about in cars.
After you have seen a few people that have gone through the windscreen you don't hesitate to ring the cops or give them a bollocking...
Trust me you sleep better for it.

hers said...

I found my daughter driving around with my grandaughter lying on her knee on the front seat. No one, my daughter, her partner or the little on had belts on. I raged at them. My daughter came up with excuses.

My kids have been taught to use carseats and belts since they were born. When they were small they would scream with mortal terror if the car was started before they were clicked into their carseats.

I'm horrified by my daughter's stupid attitude. I've told her that next time I will call the police. I'd rather see her and my granddaughet alive and angry at me than anything else.

Mr Reasonable said...

Culture is no excuse for stupidity. Next time steal the car, drop the kids off at kindy and sell it on TradeMe. Simple and everyone's happy. Oh, except the mum but she shouldn't be driving anyway.

Martha said...

Thanks you peeps. I've kind of formulated a plan. I thought perhaps I could talk to the cops, and they could do a snap check of parents dropping off kiddies at kindergarten, and prior to that we'd send home a car safety notice.

At least I'd feel like I've done something.

Whaddaya reckon?

Violet said...

Regardless of their culture, there's no excuse for leaving the car keys in there with them; I'd have locked the kids in, at least.