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Is It Okay to Put Baby's Car Seat On the Shopping Cart?

I've seen parents pushing shopping carts with car seats on top of them. Is that really safe?

Re:

I've seen parents pushing shopping carts with car seats on top of them. Is that really safe?

The Bump Expert

Nope. It's not safe. Because we see other parents with their babies' car seats perched on shopping carts, we think it's totally cool, but it's actually more dangerous than you probably think.

Shopping carts can tip over easily -- and they're more likely to if there's a car seat mounted on them, says Debra Holtzman, author of theThe Safe Baby. "The cart has a narrow wheel base in relation to its height, so the center of gravity is affected when you put a child in it," she says. "When your child’s car seat is on top of it, the center of gravity is affected even more, increasing the chances of tipping."

Adding groceries and other swag to your cart makes it even more unstable. "While carts are usually unbalanced to begin with, when they're loaded up they're even more unbalanced, says Tom Patire, safety expert and author of the Personal Protection Handbook. "If the car seat flips, your child will be trapped." He adds that putting an unstable sitter in the cart without a car seat is just as unsafe. And yes, we know you're being careful, pushing baby slowly in the cart, but can you really trust everyone else in the store not to bump into you?

Instead of taking the risk of mounting the car seat to the shopping cart, try these alternatives:

Do tag-team shopping.

Let your partner take care of baby while you do the shopping, or vice versa. Or bring along a friend who can hold baby (or push him in a stroller) while you do the cart pushing.

Shop online or remotely.

Try a grocery delivery service, such as Fresh Direct. Some stores even offer shopper services, where you can order your groceries online and then pick them up (already bagged!), for a small extra fee.

Use a baby carrier.

Hold baby in a safe baby carrier or sling while you push the cart. He's much more stable strapped to you than he is to a cart.

Take shorter, more frequent trips.

Got a stroller with a lot of storage underneath? Go shopping a few times a week instead of just once, getting just what you need for the next day or two. You'll likely have enough room to tote it in the stroller basket and won't even need a cart.

Plus, more from The Bump:

Baby Safety 101

Making a First-Aid Kid for Baby?

Top 12 Babyproofing Products

Kylie McConville

Is It Okay to Put Baby's Car Seat in Shopping Cart?

For some of us it is flat out not possible to make grocery shopping "a family affair" it would be so cool if we could all live like that but for a good majority of us, this article sounded like a fairy tale. I would love to hear of some ideas that are just a bit more realistic.

Drea0223 |

Is It Okay to Put Baby's Car Seat On the Shopping Cart?

I agree completely with Drea! while a car seat in or on the shopping cart may not be the safest option, it is often the only one, until cart manufacturers tweak the design of carts themselves. consider this...... is it really just coincidence that the car seat locks on or rests on the top of the cart so securely? or are cart and car seat manufacturers intentionally designing their products for parents who do need to take their children shopping? I have tried using a baby carrier as well as a stroller for grocery shopping...... that is more of a disaster/stress/ waste of time and energy than a car seat on the cart. Hopefully you are in the lucky minority that the above options work well for.

miya_023 |

Is It Okay to Put Baby's Car Seat On the Shopping Cart?

I have never heard of a child being injured by a grocery cart ride. Are we getting a little absurd here on the BUMP? How about some articles that are a little more helpful and a little less stupid... I think I will save those rare moments of alone time for something a little more fulfilling than grocery shopping.

Jeanneplusone |

Is It Okay to Put Baby's Car Seat On the Shopping Cart?

It's dangerous and I remember when this little boy died when the carrier fell from the cart - http://www.newscentralga.com/news/local/Memorial-Held-for-Child-Killed-in-Kroger-Accident-130376013.html

brandeeteer |

Is It Okay to Put Baby's Car Seat On the Shopping Cart?

I could still hang up with trauma of this incident when my mother put the car seat of cebu car rental services in the cart with my younger brother. He fell when he’s trying to reach for something and was being injured. It is not advisable to put the car seat in a cart and this is highly prohibited these days because on the same cases.

annatoutcher |

Is It Okay to Put Baby's Car Seat On the Shopping Cart?

If you decide to put your child in a shopping cart anyway, then follow these rules: Place your child in a safety belt or harness at all times when in a shopping cart. Never leave your child alone in a shopping cart. Do not let your child stand up in a shopping cart. Do not place an infant carrier on top of the shopping cart. Do not put your child in the basket. Never allow your child to ride on the outside of a cart. Do not allow an older child to climb on the cart or push the cart with another child in it, because it is very easy for a child to tip the cart over. Read more here...

allenstonmia |

Is It Okay to Put Baby's Car Seat On the Shopping Cart?

You should not do this if you want to be 100% sure your baby won`t get hurt, I saw a lot of people at the mall doing this or letting their older kids push the cart and I don`t think this is good because it`s not hard for a kid to tip over the cart. I try not to take my baby with me when I go shopping, all those noises scare her and I prefer to shop now from on-line websites.

amyabel68 |

Is It Okay to Put Baby's Car Seat On the Shopping Cart?

I noticed a man placing his kid in the shopping cart when I went to the mall to buy Fintech abrasives, his wife panicked when she saw this and took the car seat from the cart right away. I guess she saw unfortunate cases when kids tip over the cart and does not want her child to suffer.

johnsolas |

Is It Okay to Put Baby's Car Seat On the Shopping Cart?

My husband bought recently a personalized baby`s car seat for his car bought at BlueSkyClassicCars.com, it has so many interesting features and it is very easy to take the car seat anywhere we want. People should be careful where they place them as they are unstable and the baby might get hurt.

amyabel68 |