Be Child Safe

Child Safety

All-Terrain Vehicles, Alcohol and Families with Children Don’t Mix!


Requiem for Jaylen and Neaveah–

August 12, 2013–In Center Point, Indiana, the evening of August 5, one-year old Jaylen, was riding with his two-year old brother Xavier in an ATV being driven by their 22-year old mother. Suddenly the ATV they were riding in, crashed into a cement wall.  Someone had reported an ATV in the area was being driven recklessly earlier.  According to a report in The Chicago Tribune, Jaylen and a two-year old girl, a daughter of the driver’s friend, also in the ATV, were killed.  Jaylen’s brother was injured, and Jaylen and Xavier’s mother died in a hospital soon afterward. According to The Chicago Tribune,  a “preliminary investigation suggests alcohol and excessive speed could have contributed to the crash.”

However popular, ATVs are not always steady rides. Take them off-road or onto uneven pavement and they can be less steady.  Add alcohol to the mix– and the judgment of the driver can be impaired. Stir it with speed, and you have the making of a tragedy.  Certainly this particular ATV ride turned out to be tragic for more than one family.

The best thing parents can be when they are with young children is to Be In the Moment!  Be there to watch over and care for kids in case something should go wrong. Be there with all your faculties, so you and your family have good memories of safe, good times together.  Time out of mind is not time to spend with your children or other people’s kids.  We don’t get do-overs for the most important times in our lives, and true child safety involves 100% consciousness–as well as conscientiousness–on the part of parents, family members and caregivers.  Sadly, we have only to look to the daily news to know the opposite is also true.

Author: Marianne Halterman

Marianne is a member of the SafeKids Coalition of the Central Shenandoah Valley.

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