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Honestly...Would YOU do this?

I'm almost afraid to post this because of the responses I think I'll get, but here it goes:

My husband has a CDL license and sometimes his work asks him to drive their truck. Next week they asked him to make a 6-7 hour trip. Once he gets where he's going, he'll have to stay and work for about 4 days, then he drives back. He wants the baby and I to come with him. Initially I was really excited because I've wanted to go for a short trip w/him, but never had the opportunity, but then I thought about the baby. I asked where she would go (because the truck just has 2 seats in the front and a sleeper cab)? He said he figured she and I would just relax in the cab.

I don't think I'm comfortable with that. I mean, she could be in her car seat in the cab, but she wouldn't be "buckled" to anything. Can you buckle a child seat into the passenger seat in a semi? Is that even safe?

I just don't know.

Wed. Mar 14, 1:17pm

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What do people do when they're traveling with babies and driving RV's?

Wednesday, March 14, 2007, 1:30 PM

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Same poster as before... does the company that he drives for have a policy about this? Due to insurance reasons and liability reasons I would assume that they do... perhaps you should ask them about it?

Wednesday, March 14, 2007, 1:31 PM

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I would probably just relax in the cab without thinking twice about it, but that's just me, and I'd never push my opinion on someone else. If you're uncomfortable with that thought, by all means, don't do it!

Alternatively, you could drive your own car, with the baby buckled in the backseat, and meet him there. Or buy a plane ticket or train ticket. Or, maybe that'd be a good week for the baby to visit grandma, or aunt, etc. (I don't know your situation though, so I don't know if that's a possible idea or not!) Then you could have some one-on-one time with your husband.

Finally, as he'll be working while you're there, in this unfamiliar city, maybe it'd be a better/easier idea to let him go, and plan a weekend trip somewhere with him, where you both take your car, with carseat, and spend time together, instead of apart, in an unfamiliar city.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007, 1:33 PM

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What you're comfortable with is irrelevant; it's illegal to drive with a baby that isn't buckled into a car seat.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007, 1:33 PM

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OP Here...

To the 1:30 poster: GREAT question. I never thought of that. Anyone know the answer to that?

To the 1:33 poster: I normally would just relax in the cabin also. What about the baby though? What would you guys do with her in the truck? I guess becoming a mother has made me paranoid. LOL.

Hubby's company is okay with him having other people in the truck with him. Oh...and a lot of our family isn't close and those that are, work during the day.

Thanks for the responses. I'd love to hear what anyone else has to say.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007, 1:51 PM

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perfect question for us since we just have been doing the very same thing of sorts. We bought a 14ft uhaul moving truck and have been driving from New England to the southern states- basically a 2 day drive to move our stuff. We had a tether hook installed behind the bench and we installed the seat in the middle, with the seatbelt strap and used the tether (even using the C clamp or piece of metal that is 2 c's back to back to make the lap belt stay tightened). Ford has to install these for free because of some law that was passed or they did some - not a recall but they volunteered to do every ford truck- well if yours is a ford you are set. The hook is basically a rectangle that is hooked onto a piece of metal that has holes where it can get screwed or bolted into the truck itself.

He has been very happy to ride up front with us- aside from his foot being a bit close to the gear shift- and teaching him not to kick at it- we have a safe fun time. we have 3-4 more trips planned for this spring.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007, 2:44 PM

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found a link to the interior cab of A truck... not sure if it is like your husbands truck....

If you can't strap the seat in like it is reccomended in the manual- then I suggest you follow him in your car... then you will have a vehicle you can drive while you are wherever you are going to go... how old is your daughter/baby?
Mine is about 3 yrs... I am the last poster...


Wednesday, March 14, 2007, 2:51 PM

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To the poster that has the U-Haul truck...

What type of seat is in your truck? Is it a bench seat?

Thanks for the link. I'm not sure what the inside of the truck looks like, but that at least gives me an idea of what it could possibly look like. His work actually owns the semi trailer. They rent a truck to haul it from U-Haul.

Maybe I should call them and ask for suggestions or see if they have a way to buckle in the baby seat already.

Oh...and our daughter is almost 2 months.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007, 3:16 PM

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yes- it is a big long bench seat... there is not much room at all behind the bench back part... maybe 1-2 inches... it takes both of us to install the seat, I help hold the carseat up while he and I hold the bench back away from the back of the cab and he hooks the seat into the tether... it is too difficult to tighten it further otherwise... just not the right angle for pulling the tether tight.

Then the lap belt part is just like any other car... do definately call them and if they have any issues with a baby on board you will definately hear about it. Though it would be a long drive to do it seperate- and be in your own car... you will then have a vehicle... sounds like the way to go to me.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007, 3:52 PM

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First of all you need to make sure that his work covers this. If god forbid you all get in an accident and they don't cover children or even passengers then you are liable and he could lose his job. Also RV's and semi's are two totally different things. I've been in a semi and it is a very bouncy, rough ride so if you can't strap the car seat in then you shouldn't do it. Why not be safe and drive up in your own car, follow him or meet him up there.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007, 4:42 PM

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Forget whether insurance covers it or not... is your baby replaceable with insurance money or with good intentions?
If you answer "no" (of course you will answer "no"), then don't do it - unless she can be properly strapped into a carseat.

I don't even have kids and this just really bothers me that anyone would even THINK about putting their child's life at risk.
I also think EVERYone should wear seatbelts but I guess if you don't mind killing yourself in an accident that's your business... just don't subject your children to the same risk.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007, 5:19 PM

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Actually, the truck is rented from Ryder, not U-haul. I'm not sure why I had them mixed up.

I called the Ryder place and asked them if they have any trucks that would allow room for 2 adults and a child seat. They don't. So, I told my husband that the baby and I are going to stay home unless he minded me following him in the car. He's upset, because he was excited about us all going. He even rented a really nice suite at a hotel, but oh well. So, I'll be by myself with the baby for the first time. Luckily, it's only 4 1/2 days, so we'll manage. I will have my hands full though between her and 2 dogs. LOL.

For the record...What I was really inquiring was if it was safe to put a child seat in the passenger seat in a semi or if there were other options on where to put the seat. I was not, by any means, implying that I would leave our baby not buckled into anything. I'm sorry if what I said originally wasn't clear enough.

Thanks guys.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007, 8:58 PM

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I'm glad to know you aren't going to try this. Doesn't sound safe or legal. I hope you could appeal to your husband with the "not safe and legal" arguments. Sure, you'll miss each other, but better safe than sorry.

Thursday, March 15, 2007, 3:46 AM

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I'm surprised this question came up at all! I think that ALL states now have laws about child seats. You can't just hold a baby in a moving vehicle.

Thursday, March 15, 2007, 5:41 AM

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I just rented a 27' Ryder truck about 6 months ago to move cross country. We had 2 adults, a front-facing car seat and a dog in the cab. We towed our other car due to the cost of gas. While it wasn't the most comfortable 3 days of my life, we got moved, safely and all got to spend lots of time together in the cab talking about a bunch of different things. Our daughter is 3.

Thursday, March 15, 2007, 6:20 AM

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Poster that is moving from NE to southern state

I think the OP has or had the best of intentions from the beginning- anyone coming here and insinuating that she would seriously put her child at risk is just being "high and mighty."
If someone can't ask a question or ask for help/opinons- what is the point of having a community forum. Sometimes husbands can have minds of their own, but I am sure he will see the light.

If the Ryder truck is a bench seat with a lap belt in the center- it is possible- though the child is 3 months so it would be rear facing- another hurdle- AND there can be no airbags.

If you have someone at hand to watch the dogs it would be my vote to follow behind... the suite sounds nice.

Thursday, March 15, 2007, 10:04 AM

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Since it's come up... the laws concerning vehicle safety, car seats, etc are far more complex than you might think if you haven't researched it. There are many specific cases in which a child seat is not required and these vary by state. Most of what you hear or read concerns noncommeercial passenger automobiles. An essentially similar vehicle used in a different context (for example, a taxicab) may be the same or different. A different class of vehicle may be the same or different, for example, the restraint requirements may apply up to a specific vehicle size (I remember in one state trucks with rated load-carrying capacity of under 2000 pounds have a requirement, heaver ones don't).
One rationale for these variations is that all passengers are normally safer in a heavier vehicle since physics pretty well assures that deceleration (rate of change of speed) will be less in a heavier vehicle. Convenience obviously influenced some of these laws also, and when those factors combine (for example, a city transit bus) exemption is most common.

Thursday, March 15, 2007, 10:53 AM

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To the 10:04 am poster...

OP here...

I just want to thank you. Apparantly, more people have jumped on the "I can't believe you'd consider not putting your child in a seat" band wagon w/out even reading the responses. I clarified that it was never a thought and what my real questions were.

Again...thanks. :)

Thursday, March 15, 2007, 3:29 PM

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yer welcome- let us know what happens. Sounds like it would be worth visiting the Ryder company and taking a look into the cab of the truck he would be using... check out the seatbelts that are there- and do call the officers that do seat belt safety inspections at the local police department. Ours was more than happy to help. They might know where best to find the info- that is if there is room in the cab... and no airbags, and you can install it reversed...
The other poster did bring up something interesting about the truck or semi being bigger- I would probably want the seat buckled in myself.

I think most of the backlash and negativity from other posters just comes from them being hungry.... suffering from sore muscles from all that exercising. Don't let them get to you.

Thursday, March 15, 2007, 10:48 PM

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I have done this!

It's hard, but it can be done and if you enjoy being together as a family it can be one of the best times you have ever had. Traveling around the country together in the semi truck.

Let me point you in the direction of the blog that I wrote while we were all on the truck together. I write about many of the problems we faced and the solutions we found to them. Here is the link:

I wish you well in whatever you decide.

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