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Parent-Friendly Features in Cars

It’s a fact of family life: With a growing family often comes the need for a new car.

In addition to picking one with high crash-test ratings and plenty of room, there are other car features that will give parents peace of mind on the road.

Backup camera

Being a parent means you’ll be in all sorts of places where kids gather, from the local playground to daycare parking lots to your own driveway. A backup camera helps prevent injuries – and even deaths – by allowing the driver to see what’s behind the car. Backup cameras will be standard in all new cars in 2018.

Center LATCH

LATCH, which stands for Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children, is a child safety seat system that makes it easier for parents to install a car seat correctly without using the seat belt. It is required equipment in all cars in at least two seating positions in the rear seat. Many cars have LATCH only in the two outer positions, but buying a car equipped with LATCH in the center of the rear seat gives you more flexibility to position your child. Not all car seats fit in the center position, so consult a certified child passenger safety technician to determine what is safest for your specific situation.

Lane departure warning/blind-spot detection

Sensors located on the sides of the car send an audible warning to the driver if another car is in their blind spot or if they drift out of their lane. This reduces the chances of a driver swerving to avoid a collision. Swerving throws off a vehicle’s balance (especially those higher off the ground, such as SUVs), making it more likely to roll over – the most dangerous type of collision.

Top photo: A classic backup camera. (teddyleung / iStock / Thinkstock)
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