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Topic: Is it safe to let kids sleep in their bunkbed while driving

Posted By: dtipainter on 06/06/09 06:18am

Hello,

We are relatively new owners of a Class A Discovery. My wife and I disagree on the safety of allowing the kids to sleep or watch TV in their bunkhouse beds while traveling.

Do people typically allow kids get in their beds while traveling? Or should they be seated with seat belts secured? Is any statistical information available on this subject?

Thanks
Phil


Posted By: jeepsucks on 06/06/09 06:37am

Seatbelt, of course!


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Posted By: BWhite on 06/06/09 06:47am

"Is any statistical information available on this subject?"
I think I would just go with the belts rather than possibly making a grandchild become a stat .


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Posted By: D & M on 06/06/09 06:56am

Please don't tell me you are going to decide parential issues related to protecting your child based on an unscientific poll on a forum.


Dave
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Posted By: FrontRangeRVer on 06/06/09 06:58am

Heck...as kids, we used to break open thermometers and play with the mercury in our hands......we turned out ok.

Some will say strap 'em in...others will say it's ok....their YOUR kids, and their lives are in your hands as you travel.


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SOLD 2006 Winnebago Voyage 35A (was a GREAT unit)


Posted By: Daveinet on 06/06/09 07:08am

You are asking for trouble on this one and will get a variety of strong opinions. You are certainly much more safe than in a car. You have to weigh the odds. Class A motorhomes seldom get in accidents. For an accident to be of any significance, you would have to run into a semi. A car just does not have enough weight to change the speed of a motorhome. There was someone here who had a head on collision with an SUV. There was one passenger who not only was not seat belted in, but the chair they were in was not bolted down. Everyone in the motorhome walked away from the accident. Particularly on a freeway, everyone is headed in the same direction. There has to be speed differential to a have a serious accident.
You will also find that every accident that has ever happened in an RV is discussed here. Can you imagine if we posted every accident that happens in a car? You have to weigh the odds of serious injury yours self.
You know there is a recent statistic about how smaller cars required by CAFE standards have killed 50,000 people - an average of 2000 to 3000 a year. The deaths are a result of cars weighing less than 3K lbs. But how many think nothing of buying a small car?? Seems your kids are much safer on the bunk watching TV than seat belted in these modern small death traps required by law. There are much worse dangers we are in every day than riding in bunk beds.


IRV2


Posted By: Pawz4me on 06/06/09 07:32am

We allow our kids to sleep or watch TV on the lower bunk while in motion, or on our bed. We do not allow them in the upper bunk.


Me, DH and Yogi (Shih Tzu)
2017 Winnebago Travato 59K


Posted By: turninghawk on 06/06/09 07:53am

Daveinet wrote:

You are asking for trouble on this one and will get a variety of strong opinions. You are certainly much more safe than in a car. You have to weigh the odds. Class A motorhomes seldom get in accidents. For an accident to be of any significance, you would have to run into a semi. A car just does not have enough weight to change the speed of a motorhome. There was someone here who had a head on collision with an SUV. There was one passenger who not only was not seat belted in, but the chair they were in was not bolted down. Everyone in the motorhome walked away from the accident. Particularly on a freeway, everyone is headed in the same direction. There has to be speed differential to a have a serious accident.
You will also find that every accident that has ever happened in an RV is discussed here. Can you imagine if we posted every accident that happens in a car? You have to weigh the odds of serious injury yours self.
You know there is a recent statistic about how smaller cars required by CAFE standards have killed 50,000 people - an average of 2000 to 3000 a year. The deaths are a result of cars weighing less than 3K lbs. But how many think nothing of buying a small car?? Seems your kids are much safer on the bunk watching TV than seat belted in these modern small death traps required by law. There are much worse dangers we are in every day than riding in bunk beds.



"Class A motorhomes seldom get in accidents" -- I'd be curious to see the stats on this statement.


Posted By: sowego on 06/06/09 08:03am

I'd have then belted in, even though those belts/seating situations are not even the safest -- its far better than up and around loose and free. I've heard of people putting belts across a bed but those belts will only keep a child from rolling onto the floor -- in a bad situation they would be useless unless it is 5 point harness attached in multiple locations. Do you let them ride in your car without a belt? Just because an RV is bigger does not make it safer.

I'd have to agree with previous poster who responded to the poster who thought RVs are not in frequent or serious accidents -- well maybe the news does not cover it but if you follow this forum and learn from your own experience -- stuff happens -- blowouts, quick stops, suddens swerves. We've heard of several very serious/fatal occurances on the roadways in recent years. Even during more minor events -- things inside the rig get tossed around pretty hard -- cabinets can pop open allow contents to spill out, and anything not tied down is a missle. Even the dogs and cats need to be contained.

* This post was edited 06/06/09 08:15am by sowego *


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Posted By: crickeydog on 06/06/09 08:09am

dtipainter wrote:

1. Is it safe to let kids sleep in their bunkhouse while driving or should they be seated with seat belts secured? 2. Is any statistical information available on this subject?

1. Oh you betcha. Absolutely. No question about it. I'd even encourage it. Until you have a crash or panic stop and they become human missle's, you really have nothing to worry about. Afterall, you're buckled in, right?
2. Ah, since about 1962, I think there's been a couple of articles written regarding the safety advantages of seatbelts in moving vehicles. You can probably Google "Seatbelt Safety" and find an article or two on the subject.

Happy camping!!! See ya'll down the road!!![emoticon]

* This post was edited 06/06/09 08:18am by crickeydog *


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Posted By: lfeather on 06/06/09 08:27am

dtipainter wrote:

Hello,

We are relatively new owners of a Class A Discovery. My wife and I disagree on the safety of allowing the kids to sleep or watch TV in their bunkhouse beds while traveling.

Do people typically allow kids get in their beds while traveling? Or should they be seated with seat belts secured? Is any statistical information available on this subject?

Thanks
Phil


Well, school buses typically do not have seat belts.


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Posted By: jetenbu on 06/06/09 08:29am

As noted above, your children are in your care, so do what you feel is the safest for them. I will not go into any reasons why, as you already know them. Regardless of what they want, you have to do what you as an adult feel is the safest for them. I sure would not want to have any serious injury to my grand children on my mind for eternity. Use your own best judgement.


Jim

RV: 2012 Montana 3625RE Quad Slide SKP#108921
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Posted By: Terryallan on 06/06/09 08:42am

Many of the OTR trucks with sleepers you see on the highway have the other driver sleeping in the bunk. with no belt. Falling out of bed would be the worst thing.

Also, you can get belts to secure the folks in the bed as well. That could be a good option.


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Posted By: GRANTLYN on 06/06/09 09:37am

I always wondered why school buses do not have seat belts. Does any one know?


Posted By: deandec on 06/06/09 09:42am

Obviously, motorhomes are not designed to transport more than two people belted in, facing forward, safely. These are two person vehicles and families should not own one.


Dean
95 CC Magna, Jeep GC



Posted By: Rick Jay on 06/06/09 09:46am

dtipainter,

This is always a hot topic. Here's my recommendation.

Got to Gotbelts.com and purchase the proper belts (size & color) and install in each bunk area. You may wish to install 2 or even 3 on each bunk to make sure they are reasonably secured at the feet, waist and upper torso. (I did this on our queen bed in the back. We let the kids sleep back there when we travel at night. Our rig does not have bunks. I mounted mine using the removable hardware sold by Gotbelts.)

I view seatbelts in a motorhome like seatbelts in an airplane. They will help keep you in place if you hit bumps in the road, need to swerve or brake hard. If you should be unfortunate enough to be involved in an accident where the very structure of the vehicle is compromised, I don't think seatbelts will help much. (Folks on here will tell you that you MUST have the belt bolted to the frame of the coach. I disagree. It does not do any good to be belted to the frame of the coach when the wall/bench/sofa starts moving and now you're squished between the wall/bench/sofa and the belt. They do not fully understand the difference in dynamics involved when riding in a 3,000 lb. family sedan and that of a 20,000+ lb. motorhome.)

So, you want the belts to keep the kids from rolling or bouncing out onto the floor. They WILL NOT become missiles if you panic stop UNLESS your panic stop is the result of ramming a bridge abuttment at speed. I'm assuming you're a good enough driver to make the possibility of that scenario nil. If you're not, then you may not wish to follow my advice.

You're the driver, you know your limitations and driving ability. I know mine and I feel perfectly comfortable with the precautions we have in place when we travel. (And by the way...I KNOW the pain of losing a child. We lost our 12 year old daughter last year (not in a traffic accident). She died of cancer. We can't protect ourselves from everything.)

Enjoy the trip and do what you feel comfortable with. [emoticon] And enjoy and appreciate every minute with your children.

~Rick

P.S. By the way, I doubt you'll find any statistics about such things. You'll hear all sorts of reasons why, but I suspect the reason is because it flies in the face of what our government & insurance companies want us to believe. They've been very successful in convincing the average populace that they will be safer in lightweight, beercan sheetmetal vehicles as long as they are equipped with the government mandated airbags/anti-lock brakes/etc. While these things help, the truth is, in a collision, mass is your friend. You want to be in the heavier vehicle. In our motorhomes, we ARE the heavier vehicle 99% of the time. In your family sedan, not so.

* This post was edited 06/06/09 10:26am by Rick Jay *


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Posted By: Oregon Ms on 06/06/09 09:49am

School buses are designed so that each passenger seat is a padded protective "box" so to speak. If you look, the "box" is strong with thick padding where they may hit during a sudden stop. Also, there are evacuation issues with schoolbuses and seatbelts.*

*OK. That is the official line they gave me when I have asked the schoolbus seatbelt question numerous times.


Posted By: robatthelake on 06/06/09 10:05am

I haven't ridden in a School Bus for a long time but when I did there certainly wasn't much Padding and in fact there were metal bars grab bars that would have been nasty things to bump into in the event of a crash.


Rob & Jean
98 Dutch Star Diesel Pusher ..07 Honda CRV AWD



Posted By: klm on 06/06/09 10:11am

Which one of you, you or your wife, thinks the kids should be in seat belts?? That's the one that should prevail on this issue.


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Posted By: jhilley on 06/06/09 10:38am

Nobody has mentioned the legal requirements. I believe seat belts are required for all passengers in most states.
Seat belt requirements for children by state

* This post was edited 06/06/09 10:44am by jhilley *


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Posted By: FrontRangeRVer on 06/06/09 10:53am

jhilley wrote:

Nobody has mentioned the legal requirements. I believe seat belts are required for all passengers in most states.
Seat belt requirements for children by state


Not required for Motorhomes.


Posted By: Chuck&Gail on 06/06/09 10:59am

Your kids, your choice.

Will point out my mom spent over a week in a hospital parking lot. They had a big Class C. One day mom was driving and dad went to the potty. On his way back mom had to swerve to avoid an accident. Dad busted ribs and several other problems. Thankfully hospital let mom "boondock" in the parking lot while they fixed him up. I know what THEY would answer if you asked them!


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Posted By: BarbaraOK on 06/06/09 11:03am

deandec wrote:

Obviously, motorhomes are not designed to transport more than two people belted in, facing forward, safely. These are two person vehicles and families should not own one.


Hockey puck!

Lots of Class A motorhomes have sofas and dinettes with seat belts that allow people to be properly belted in. Just because you have a problem with families doesn't mean that there aren't good options for them with Class As.

Barb


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Posted By: D & M on 06/06/09 11:04am

GRANTLYN wrote:

I always wondered why school buses do not have seat belts. Does any one know?


The NTSB does not require them. They allow the states and locals to nstall them if they so desire. But it adds to the cost and the are ineffective.

Instead of requiring seat belts, school buses are designed and constructed differently from passenger cars. School buses protect passengers through "compartmentalization", a design that includes:

Seats with high backs;

Seats filled with energy-absorbing material;

Seats placed close together to form compartments;

Strong seat anchorages.

Studies have shown that adding seat belts to the current seating configuration of a school bus can increase the chance of head and neck injuries. For a seat belt to be effective, it must be worn correctly, snug and on the upper thighs. Because school vehicles carry passengers from the very young to high school students, if seat belts were used, they would need to be readjusted and their use monitored. A seat belt not worn correctly may cause serious injuries.


Posted By: chastho on 06/06/09 07:23pm

I have always heard that most accidents occur within 25 miles of home so, never get within 25 miles of home and your chance of an accident goes way down.


Posted By: jhilley on 06/07/09 09:49am

GTN_and_Catz wrote:

jhilley wrote:

Nobody has mentioned the legal requirements. I believe seat belts are required for all passengers in most states.
Seat belt requirements for children by state


Unless I'm missing something, I believe the above site is referring only to passenger vehicles, aka cars & light trucks. From their site:
Quote:

There are mandatory safety belt laws in 49 states and the District of Columbia. In most states, these laws cover front-seat occupants only, although belt laws in 20 states and the District of Columbia cover all rear seat occupants, too.


With out checking with all states I can't say you are wrong, however it is similar to those who think you don't have to observe trailer requirements and laws when towing four-down. Here is a link to how it is defined in California. Discussion seat belt use in RVs in California.


Posted By: Canadian Rainbirds on 06/07/09 11:07am

Ob1quixote wrote:

Life has risks, you cant avoid them all.

Seat belts are not a guarantee of accident survival, and not wearing them is not a death sentence.


I don't understand people that think like this.I spent most of my working live as a paramedic and Air Ambulance dispatcher for the BC Ambulance, arranging the transportation of too many children to BC Childrens hospital. A child that has gone through a windshield is not a happy child, if he lives.

If you want to be an idiot and risk being a statistic please at least carry a current Organ Donor card. Put the kiddies in approved seats for their size and age and save them the grief and pain.






Posted By: Ob1quixote on 06/07/09 12:25pm

Canadian Rainbirds wrote:

Ob1quixote wrote:

Life has risks, you cant avoid them all.

Seat belts are not a guarantee of accident survival, and not wearing them is not a death sentence.


I don't understand people that think like this.I spent most of my working live as a paramedic and Air Ambulance dispatcher for the BC Ambulance, arranging the transportation of too many children to BC Childrens hospital. A child that has gone through a windshield is not a happy child, if he lives.

If you want to be an idiot and risk being a statistic please at least carry a current Organ Donor card. Put the kiddies in approved seats for their size and age and save them the grief and pain.


A seat belt is no guarantee of an injury-free accident, is it? C'mon Mr Dispatcher, fess up, it is not a black and white issue. When you get into an accident, injury and death are a possibility. Sure, a seat belt can change the odds a bit, but still no guarantee.

An even better way to ensure the safety of your passengers is to drive safely and avoid the accident long before it occurs, constantly observing the traffic around you looking for the signs of stupidity that can cause an incident, employing driving tactics that aim to minimize the proximity to other vehicles and therefore interactions between vehicles.

Kinda like what I do on my Honda Goldwing, where the stakes are quite a bit higher than in the RV, as I pilot my way though the masses of confirmed idiots...last accident in '82.


Posted By: Bikeboy57 on 06/07/09 03:55pm

Please don't interpret my comments as cavalier about my family or your family's safety. I have viewed this argument from a different perspective than has been discussed so far.

This my perspective. In a typical accident with traffic moving in the same direction, even a 6000 pound SUV doesn't stand a chance against the 40,000 pounds of the RV. So the occupants aren't likely so suffer life ending injuries. What causes occupants to become missles is when the speed of the occupant changes rapidly relative to the speed of the vehicle. This is why the mass of the vehicle changes the dynamics of a crash.

Now, if we hit a bridge abutment, large tree, stopped tractor trailer, or other large stationary object then we could get hurt, especially the front occupants. I do strap in as the driver, and require the passenger to strap in primarily to keep us from hitting the windshield and popping through. The front compartment is the most dangerous place in the coach because of the large windshield and the proximity of the passengers to the windshield.

If we happen to roll the coach over, then all heck is going to break loose regardless if we are strapped in or not. Lot and lots of loose stuff flying around inside.

Here is MY reality of the situation. Most RV's were not constructed with any crash in mind. Putting seatbelts on the rear occupants may make you feel better, but I do not think the passengers are any better protected. I have viewed crash pictures of all kinds of RV's. It was one of the primary reasons I sold a very nice late model RV and bought a Newell. The RV of the typical construction comes apart in a crash of any significance. Newells and Bluebirds tend to hold up better, and the Prevosts hold up the best.

What facts do I use to make these statements. One, the laws of physics. Force = mass X Acceleration If two cars hit then the eqaution is mass of car one X deceleration of car 1 = mass of car 2 X deceleration of car 2. So if car one weighs 6000 pounds and car two weighs 36000 pounds then car 1 will decelerate 6 times harder or faster than car two. Remember what bangs the occupants around is the rapid deceleration in a crash.

The other data is crash pictures. Do some homework and look at crash pictures of mainstream RV's, the ugly truth is they come apart. Then look at crash pictures of Bluebirds, Newells, and Prevosts. Yep, they get mangled, but they don't come apart. This is because of the construction techniques used on the chassis and walls.

Ok, I just put my Nomex fire suit on. Here come the flames.


Richard and Rhonda
1999 Newell
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Posted By: henw on 06/07/09 04:23pm

Our friends rolled their MOHO when a merging semi, coming out of a weigh station, drifted into the side of it. There was nothing they could do.
They and their kids were OK as they all were fortunately belted. The RV was trashed. Deceleration had nothing to do with it.
No belts would have equaled injury or death.


Posted By: Alphamonk on 06/07/09 04:42pm

50pascals -that's a great idea about the cargo nets. Maybe we should all install one behind the driver's area to keep the other occupants from crashing into us or the windshields!






Posted By: PopBeavers on 06/07/09 04:50pm

moparmaga2 wrote:


I guess all you people make the tour bus driver stop at a gas station or the pilot to land the airplane when you are going on a cross-country or intercontinental trip and have to use the potty.. Or, maybe you safety police have cast iron bladders that allow you to hold your pee for 10+ hours.


On three different occasions I was a volunteer chaperon escorting middle school children on a trip from San Jose to Los Angeles on a charter bus.

Under no circumstance were the children allowed out of their seats while the bus as in motion. I will admit that there were no seat belts.

I would prefer that school buses had seat belts, but the tax payers will not pay for it. Fortunately, my children rarely road a school bus.

Before we bought our trailer, we used to borrow FILs MH. At all times while the MH was in motion, everyone had a seat belt on.

The most important responsibility of a parent is to see to it that their children are alive, and well when they turn 18. Seat belts was part of my strategy. You get to create your own strategy. I hope yours works as well as mine did.

If there is no reason for passengers in an MH to wear a seat belt, then there is also no reason for the driver or front seat passenger either. They could reduce the cost of the MH by eliminating all seat belts. I wonder why they do not.

Just because something is legal does not mean it is recommended or a best practice.

I still can not understand what the penalty is for wearing a seat belt in an MH


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Super Glide hitch


Posted By: PopBeavers on 06/07/09 04:57pm

Ob1quixote wrote:



An even better way to ensure the safety of your passengers is to drive safely and avoid the accident long before it occurs, constantly observing the traffic around you looking for the signs of stupidity that can cause an incident, employing driving tactics that aim to minimize the proximity to other vehicles and therefore interactions between vehicles.


My passengers do not wear a seat belt because I am an unsafe driver. They wear them because some other drivers are unsafe.

I have very few friends that have ever been in an automobile accident. But, the few that have been have all told me that they were glad they had their seat belts on.

Especially the one that rolled over when the brakes completely failed coming down a hill into a T intersection. If the tree had not been were it was, they probably would have continued rolling through the front door of the house.


Posted By: Ob1quixote on 06/07/09 05:23pm

PopBeavers wrote:

Ob1quixote wrote:



An even better way to ensure the safety of your passengers is to drive safely and avoid the accident long before it occurs, constantly observing the traffic around you looking for the signs of stupidity that can cause an incident, employing driving tactics that aim to minimize the proximity to other vehicles and therefore interactions between vehicles.


My passengers do not wear a seat belt because I am an unsafe driver. They wear them because some other drivers are unsafe.

I have very few friends that have ever been in an automobile accident. But, the few that have been have all told me that they were glad they had their seat belts on.

Especially the one that rolled over when the brakes completely failed coming down a hill into a T intersection. If the tree had not been were it was, they probably would have continued rolling through the front door of the house.


Wow, looks like I'm the bad guy here, even though I havent told anyone not to wear them! Just pointed out that they arent the end to all injuries or deaths in an accident.

For the record, seat belts are used in my family.


Posted By: SooperDaddy on 06/06/09 11:07am

I think this situation is exactly why Mr. Bung Gee inventer (in 1938) the Bungee Cord! [emoticon] [emoticon] [emoticon]

Watch some NHTSA test dummy crash test videos THEN decide!


My posts shouldn't be taken for factual data, and are purely fictional, for entertainment purposes, should not be constituted as related to scientific, technical, engineering, legal, religious, spiritual, or practical advice. After all it's FREE! Amen. ">



Posted By: JTHarley on 06/06/09 11:10am

I remember laying in the back window of my dad's old mercury merauder 4 kids in the backseat and 2 adults and children in the front and the dog bouncing back and forth. Windows up with mom and dad chain smoking the whole way.......Oh how times have changed..........for the better I hope!

Just get some rope and tie the little buggers right in the bed and off you go. Just kidding....they're your kids, do as you see fit. I'll bet you already knew the answer to this question before you posted it.


Jim , MJ & Spirit of Sambuca Bear
2015 Dynamax DQ320XL
Jeep Sahara Toad



Posted By: PopBeavers on 06/06/09 11:17am

If you can predict when an accident will occur, just have the kids put their seat belts on a few minutes before the accident.


Posted By: richardnm on 06/06/09 12:01pm

To make sure the kids don't roll out of the bunks always turn LEFT and pin them to the curbside wall.


Posted By: FrontRangeRVer on 06/06/09 12:07pm

BarbaraOK wrote:

deandec wrote:

Obviously, motorhomes are not designed to transport more than two people belted in, facing forward, safely. These are two person vehicles and families should not own one.


Hockey puck!

Lots of Class A motorhomes have sofas and dinettes with seat belts that allow people to be properly belted in. Just because you have a problem with families doesn't mean that there aren't good options for them with Class As.

Barb


He said it in jest...chill out!


Posted By: FiveOJoe on 06/06/09 12:10pm

.

* This post was last edited 06/06/09 07:51pm by FiveOJoe *


Posted By: Ob1quixote on 06/06/09 12:10pm

interesting read...

http://www.ncsbs.org/testimonies/seat_belt_background.htm


Posted By: SCHARLEY on 06/06/09 12:12pm

"Just because an RV is bigger does not make it safer."


Actually it does. [emoticon]


SCHARLEY


Posted By: SCHARLEY on 06/06/09 12:31pm

crickeydog wrote:

dtipainter wrote:

1. Is it safe to let kids sleep in their bunkhouse while driving or should they be seated with seat belts secured? 2. Is any statistical information available on this subject?

1. Oh you betcha. Absolutely. No question about it. I'd even encourage it. Until you have a crash or panic stop and they become human missle's, you really have nothing to worry about. Afterall, you're buckled in, right?
2. Ah, since about 1962, I think there's been a couple of articles written regarding the safety advantages of seatbelts in moving vehicles. You can probably Google "Seatbelt Safety" and find an article or two on the subject.

Happy camping!!! See ya'll down the road!!![emoticon]


"1. Oh you betcha. Absolutely. No question about it. I'd even encourage it. Until you have a crash or panic stop and they become human missle's, you really have nothing to worry about. Afterall, you're buckled in, right?"

Thats about like saying that you don't have to worry about a kid dying from SEDS as long as you don't let them fall asleep. [emoticon] Fact is there were more kids who died in their beds at home last night than there were who died in motorhome accidents. Knowing this are you willing to take the risk of tucking yours in at home tonight, or are you going to do the safe thing and ride them around all night in the RV? [emoticon]

"2. Ah, since about 1962, I think there's been a couple of articles written regarding the safety advantages of seatbelts in moving vehicles. You can probably Google "Seatbelt Safety" and find an article or two on the subject."

Would you like the ones supporting their use or the ones warning against it? [emoticon]


Posted By: moparmaga2 on 06/06/09 01:39pm

I guess none of the so called safety police on here have ever been on a school bus, a tour bus (greyhound, private tour) or an airplane. Each of these vehicles permit you to move about when safe. There is always that risk that something could happen. (ok, the school bus does not permit it, but I guarantee you all kids do it)

I guess all you people make the tour bus driver stop at a gas station or the pilot to land the airplane when you are going on a cross-country or intercontinental trip and have to use the potty.. Or, maybe you safety police have cast iron bladders that allow you to hold your pee for 10+ hours.


2015 Jayco Greyhawk 31DS
2013 Ram 1500 Laramie Hemi
2008 Yamaha FJR Sport Touring Bike in the bed of the truck


Posted By: deandec on 06/06/09 03:57pm

BroncoRVer wrote:

He said it in jest...chill out!


Thank you. [emoticon]


Posted By: 50pascals on 06/06/09 04:25pm

Pawz4me wrote:

We allow our kids to sleep or watch TV on the lower bunk while in motion, or on our bed. We do not allow them in the upper bunk.


Terryallan wrote:

Many of the OTR trucks with sleepers you see on the highway have the other driver sleeping in the bunk. with no belt. Falling out of bed would be the worst thing.

Also, you can get belts to secure the folks in the bed as well. That could be a good option.


Trucks have a cargo net in the sleeper that latches around the bed with regular seat belt buckles. This prevents the "sleeper" from flying out of bed. A good rule of thumb is that no one uses them. I know this because I have removed several to make safety nets for our bunk beds. The kids sleep feet facing the front, buckle the nets so they can't fall out of bed.

This practice is one of the major benefits of owning a motorhome. Otherwise we would take the conversion van, drive 6 hours, and get a hotel room.

fordsooperdootydieselsmoker wrote:

I think this situation is exactly why Mr. Bung Gee inventer (in 1938) the Bungee Cord! [emoticon] [emoticon] [emoticon]

Watch some NHTSA test dummy crash test videos THEN decide!


If we watched the videos, we would never drive, or eat meat, or almost everything we do in our daily lives.

One last question for the seat belt supporters who will flame me.

Do you smoke around your kids?

Smoking and second hand smoke is the highest injury rate activity we encounter on a regular basis.

Do you ever drive when you're tired?

Ever drink alcohol?

If you're worried about health and safety stop smoking, drinking, driving, get a radon test, tear the carpet out of your house, remove all your furniture and fabrics, and then never go downhill skiing.

The above activities drop your chances for injury by some astronomical number - like almost to zero.

Clearly the answer is that there is some acceptable level of risk in any activity that we all have learned to live with or accept.

I strongly dislike half-fact arguments when the underlying lifestyle risks are so much worse.


Posted By: River_Rat on 06/06/09 05:10pm

We treat it about like the airlines do. Buckle up during take off, landing, climbing, descent and any other time the pilot is concerned that conditions may worsen unexpectedly.

In heavy traffic everyone is buckled up. When we get on some open road I let them use the head, get something from the fridge etc. But only to and from...no hanging out without a seatbelt. Want to use the head then go ahead and get back to your seat.

When traffic gets heavy or the weather gets bad I turn the "seatbelts" sign back on again.


Scott
1994 Fleetwood Bounder 32


Posted By: thunderstruckhd on 06/06/09 05:19pm

They do it in tour busses all the time...


Prevost H3-45 Featherlite Vantare
500HP Series 60 Detroit Diesel
Assorted trailers,toys and toads
And Zoie the Doberman.(01/26/01 - 07/23/11) R.I.P.



Posted By: time_to_go_now on 06/06/09 05:41pm

dtipainter wrote:

Hello,

We are relatively new owners of a Class A Discovery. My wife and I disagree on the safety of allowing the kids to sleep or watch TV in their bunkhouse beds while traveling.

Do people typically allow kids get in their beds while traveling? Or should they be seated with seat belts secured? Is any statistical information available on this subject?

Thanks
Phil


You are asking what other people do. I will not advise you on what you should do. That is your business. I will tell you what I do.

The reason we bought a motorhome was so that my family could travel in comfort. To my kids, that means laying on a bed watching TV. To me and my DW, that means putting the kids to bed on their bunks and putting some miles under our belts.

We often put the kids (and us) to sleep in the motorhome the night before a trip and I get up real early and hit the road. We can get 200 miles down the road before they even wake up.

It is more important to me that the kids stay put. Somewhere. Anywhere. If they are at the dinette, they use the seatbelts. If not, they don't. I really don't want ANYONE getting up and moving around the RV. Especially in stop and go traffic.

Now, I am NOT saying it is necessarily safe. I am saying that it is a risk I feel is worth taking. To each his own and your mileage may vary.

Good Luck.


Jim and Deanna

2008 Tiffin Allegro 35QBA FRED
2007 Carson Trailer 22' Titan TH
Trailer Toad
Me, Wife, Boy/18, Boy/15, Girl/13
1985 Toyota 4Runner
ONE quad, THREE kids, ONE motorcycles, ONE wife, TWO dogs, ONE cat, ONE Polaris RZR



Posted By: wayne_tw on 06/06/09 05:47pm

dtipainter wrote:

Do people typically allow kids get in their beds while traveling? Or should they be seated with seat belts secured? Is any statistical information available on this subject?


I am having a hard time believing you are actually asking this question. Do you allow your kids to ride in your car not buckled in? Do you allow them to lay on the seat without a seat belt? Of course you do not. I am sure they are properly buckled in every time they get into a motor vehicle. Then tell me, what pray tell, what is the difference between your car as a motor vehicle and your motorhome as a motor vehicle.

Let them wander around the motorhome while it is in motion, let them sleep in their beds while you are underway, let them play about as if they are at home on the living room floor. Just don't be surprised if they are seriously injured or worse if you are involved in a minor mishap, or even just a very quick stop.


Posted By: skrams on 06/06/09 06:22pm

Apropos of nothing, a child seated at the dinette, lap belt on, can easily break ribs in a sudden stop - the edge of the table is perfect for that. So how is that any safer than lying in bed?


2007 Four Winds Hurricane 34B (Ford Chassis) Bunkhouse
2007 Chevrolet Cobalt LT (5-speed manual)
SMI Stay-In-Play & Blue-Ox Aventa LX


Posted By: GTN_and_Catz on 06/06/09 07:41pm

jhilley wrote:

Nobody has mentioned the legal requirements. I believe seat belts are required for all passengers in most states.
Seat belt requirements for children by state


Unless I'm missing something, I believe the above site is referring only to passenger vehicles, aka cars & light trucks. From their site:
Quote:

There are mandatory safety belt laws in 49 states and the District of Columbia. In most states, these laws cover front-seat occupants only, although belt laws in 20 states and the District of Columbia cover all rear seat occupants, too.



Gene
2003 36' Rexhall RexAir
2009 Jeep Wrangler Sahara
Demco Kar Kaddy SS
Blue Ox Aventa II
2 Ragdolls
1 Tabby



Posted By: Beaker on 06/06/09 07:43pm

"I am saying that it is a risk I feel is worth taking."

But you aren't taking the risk. The kids are.


2008 Silverado 2500HD Duramax
2010 Cruiser 26RK


Posted By: Daveinet on 06/06/09 08:02pm

fordsooperdootydieselsmoker wrote:


Watch some NHTSA test dummy crash test videos THEN decide!
Ok, so where can I find a crash dummy video in a 20K lbs vehicle running into an average size car??

FiveOJoe wrote:

Being unrestrained in any vehicle during a collision has the potential to be bad regardless of the size, weight or shape of the vehicle.
Breathing has the "potential" to be "bad" as well. You are playing odds, but are you consistent? The point is, with a heavy vehicle, the odds of are pretty slim. Statistically, above 3K lbs, the more weight you have in your vehicle, the odds of surviving goes up dramatically. http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/picrender.fcgi?artid=1446695&blobtype=pdf

Quote:

Being in a large vehicle does not protect you from harm in a fix object or rollover collision.
In most RVs, a seatbelt isn't going to mean squat in a roll over, or have you never seen photos of RVs that have rolled.
Quote:

And as far as RV's rarely being in accidents...
Ever try to stand in the aisle of a city bus without holding on?? Now imagine it slamming into a bridge....
Not exactly, but does taking a shower qualify? Not sure what would cause one's RV to slam into a bridge. Normally when that type of thing happens with a car, it is a result of loss of control - hitting the brakes and having the car rotate sideways and over correcting. Guess what, it is incredibly difficult to get an RV sideways, especially in a slide. Yes, I have tried to make an RV go sideways, but because it is long and narrow, the wind resistance keeps it pretty straight. Also with the long wheels base, it is difficult to develop sideways momentum. Its just too much mass to get it very far sideways. Its even difficult to do intentionally in snow, which not what the OP is talking about.


Posted By: Ob1quixote on 06/06/09 08:17pm

Life has risks, you cant avoid them all.

Seat belts are not a guarantee of accident survival, and not wearing them is not a death sentence.


Posted By: Just Bob on 06/06/09 07:32pm

Just spray them with Protect-All, and put them to bed. Nothing bad can happen to them then. [emoticon][emoticon][emoticon]


Posted By: D & M on 06/08/09 10:10am

Did anyone notice that the original poster has already realized that he is not getting the information he hoped for and has decided to agree with his wife and belt the kids in.

YOU CAN ALL STOP FIGHTING NOW.


Posted By: Rick Jay on 06/08/09 10:35am

D & M wrote:

YOU CAN ALL STOP FIGHTING NOW.


And what would the Affinity Group do with all that freed-up bandwidth? LOL [emoticon]

~Rick


Posted By: mowermech on 06/13/09 01:02pm

GTN_and_Catz wrote:

pingpong wrote:

Two words...DUCK TAPE! Just duck tape them in and they won't go anywhere! [emoticon]

That's what we do ... and it works:
[image]


Having had twins, I can honestly say THERE WERE TIMES...
They are now almost 30 years old, and THERE ARE STILL TIMES...

Oh, by the way, for those who are so adamant about what happens to an RV in a crash, please, enlighten me (and us), do you, perchance FLY? (in an airplane, that is, not chemically induced flight)
Have you SEEN what happens to an aircraft in most crashes?
And you STILL get on one of those things?
I once built commercial aircraft.
I have an A&P license.
I will NOT fly, period.
However, I will take a nap on the bed in the Tioga while DW drives, if the mood strikes me.
Safety equipment saves lives. Safety equipment injures and kills people. BOTH statements are TRUE, but you will seldom see the statistics on the second statement!
You WILL, however, see the news reports that state that "the driver of the motorcycle was not wearing a helmet" or "the passenger who died was not wearing a seat belt".


CM1, USN (RET)
2002 Fleetwood Southwind 32V, Ford V10
Daily Driver: '06 PT Cruiser Turbo
Toy: 1999 Dodge QC LWB, Cummins, Automatic, 4X4
Other toys: a pair of Kawasaki Brute Force 750 ATVs.
"When seconds count, help is only minutes away!"


Posted By: Old Snipe on 06/13/09 05:53pm

So then these seatbelt police will nail you to the wall for not being buckled up in your RV while you take a snooze on the couch will themselves think nothing of driving off in their toad with their dog in the arms of the driver!

That really scares me! There is safety equipment and there is common sense, sometimes one negates the other.

Best Regards!


Paul D
2007 Winnebago Journey 39K, Cat C7 350 HP
(aka "R SANITY")
2003 Honda Element 4WD Toad
www.rsanityrvtravels.blogspot.com


Posted By: mowermech on 06/13/09 06:07pm

Old Snipe wrote:

So then these seatbelt police will nail you to the wall for not being buckled up in your RV while you take a snooze on the couch will themselves think nothing of driving off in their toad with their dog in the arms of the driver!

That really scares me! There is safety equipment and there is common sense, sometimes one negates the other.

Best Regards!


Yeah, what happens to the little dog when the steering wheel air bag fires?
The driver? Who cares? PROTECT THE DOG!!


Posted By: escaper1 on 06/13/09 06:08pm

You would not even have to be in an accident for them to get hurt. The top bunk would really be a no,no. We have 6 kids four of which still live at home and travel with us. Not always are they in a seatbelt but i make sure they down low are sitting. The older ones do tend to lay across the bed and watch the tv in the back. I have had to lay into the brakes really hard and no one has come flying yet. But I do prefer them in belts but on long drives they do move from front to back. The little one though is always in a seat belt she is 6.


Posted By: riggarob on 06/13/09 10:45am

Spot on, again ! Robbie P.S. I was a combat MARINE, in Viet Nam. What do you think the chances were of me being hurt, flying out of a hot spot in a chopper, w/o being "buckled up" ? I just have to figure ('cause I can't find any figures) that RV accidents are very unusual, considering the amount of miles we all travel in them. Semper Fi



50pascals wrote:

I can't really make the "thrown clear" argument. But I will say I rolled my pickup truck and I believe not wearing a seatbelt is what allowed me to walk away with just a single bruise. The truck was not totalled, but that was 20 years ago when people used to fix things.

In a car its seatbelts all the way.

My kids daily get injured playing outside in some form or another. I haven't decided the risk of injury is such that they be made to stay inside and play the wii.

To all you safety folks, you still haven't addressed my "other lifestyle choices." And to be honest, that's what I expected. It's easy to ignore things in our own lives to preach to someone else about theirs. But if I can make one point abundantly clear - If you want to reduce the risk of injury to your children you wouldn't do half the things that we call "life."

Wrecking an RV is a roll of the dice. You can't make a logical, non-emotion based argument any other way.



08 FW Providence 40X
FL-XCS chassis
46"LED,Blu-ray 5.1
Ready Brute tow bar/braking/break away system & wireless light bar
'11 Ford Edge AWD toad
2 Honda 2000s for 30 amp dry camp
&300 watts of solar

Beware of those who point their finger the LOUDEST !


Posted By: 50pascals on 06/12/09 10:44pm

I can't really make the "thrown clear" argument. But I will say I rolled my pickup truck and I believe not wearing a seatbelt is what allowed me to walk away with just a single bruise. The truck was not totalled, but that was 20 years ago when people used to fix things.

In a car its seatbelts all the way.

My kids daily get injured playing outside in some form or another. I haven't decided the risk of injury is such that they be made to stay inside and play the wii.

To all you safety folks, you still haven't addressed my "other lifestyle choices." And to be honest, that's what I expected. It's easy to ignore things in our own lives to preach to someone else about theirs. But if I can make one point abundantly clear - If you want to reduce the risk of injury to your children you wouldn't do half the things that we call "life."

Wrecking an RV is a roll of the dice. You can't make a logical, non-emotion based argument any other way.


Posted By: wny_pat on 06/12/09 04:25pm

Take a look at the pics in the following link: http://www.wtok.com/news/headlines/47244027.html. See the queen bed surround laying on the ground. And you want to let the kids travel in the bunk with no restraints of any type. I know, this was not your normal accident, but. A motorhome is not a car, and it is not designed with accident safety in mind like a car is.


“All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.”


Posted By: Tinstar on 06/12/09 04:48pm

Rick Jay wrote:

Tinstar, while travelling, if they need to use the facilities and I deem it is safe to do so, we will let them unbuckle, do their business, and then buckle in again.

I'm not sure if that fits into your "poll" options, though. Rick


You make my exact point. Thanks



wny_pat wrote:

Take a look at the pics in the following link: http://www.wtok.com/news/headlines/47244027.html. See the queen bed surround laying on the ground. And you want to let the kids travel in the bunk with no restraints of any type. I know, this was not your normal accident, but. A motorhome is not a car, and it is not designed with accident safety in mind like a car is.


Those pictures make the point pretty good that in a bad crash, seat belts are not going to protect you in a m/h. Can you imagine being belted on the left side of that coach as the tree went through the side of it.


">Never pass up a chance to go somewhere">


Posted By: wa8yxm on 06/12/09 07:35pm

Accidents fall into two groups, occasionally there is a 3rd but it's rare

Majority of accidents: Seat belts save lives, PERIOD

A few: Seat belts make no difference, YOU ARE TOAST A real life example of this, (Actually this was a "Seat belt would have saved 2 lives crash) Mr. Drunk Driver is going round the bend, the driver's door on his piece of junk opens and he falls out getting some road rash (Scrapes) for his effort, the Pick up, now driverless goes straight, over the curb, over the embankment and plops down on the car, 2 (now deceased) occupants on the freeway below..

Did this really happen.... Well, let me put it this way *I* answered the call to 9-1-1. (That was one EXCITED courtesy patrol driver let me tell you, he was right behind the poor ladies in the car)

Had the drunk been belted in, He might not have killed 2 people that day (How many times do you think of that angle)

IN a very very few accidents.. You are better off w/o the belt.. Perhaps one in one thousand or less.

But by and large, Seat belts save lives

Air bags.. They hurt people


Home is where I park it.
Kenwood TS-2000 housed in a 2005 Damon Intruder 377



Posted By: MargaretB on 06/12/09 03:16pm

GTN_and_Catz wrote:

pingpong wrote:

Two words...DUCK TAPE! Just duck tape them in and they won't go anywhere! [emoticon]

That's what we do ... and it works:
[image]


This is amusing, but it gives me the willies and my claustrophobia makes my hair stand straight up when I look at it!


Two retirees. Perpetual newbies. Techno- and mechanophobes.
2015 Tracer 230
2014 F-150 XLT EcoBoost


Posted By: AZPops on 06/12/09 12:56am

GTN_and_Catz wrote:

pingpong wrote:

Two words...DUCK TAPE! Just duck tape them in and they won't go anywhere! [emoticon]

That's what we do ... and it works:
[image]


I don't have any kids but, this is the second time I saw this photo and it still makes me laugh!!! Too funny!!!!!

Pops


Posted By: Rick Jay on 06/12/09 06:54am

Tinstar,

We have the kids belted and we ALWAYS have them in the RV unless I'm bringing it in for service/inspection/fuel etc. However, while travelling, if they need to use the facilities and I deem it is safe to do so, we will let them unbuckle, do their business, and then buckle in again.

I'm not sure if that fits into your "poll" options, though. [emoticon]

GTN_and_Katz....love the picture...thanks for the laughs. [emoticon]

~Rick


Posted By: Green D on 06/12/09 07:04am

My family crash plan is right before we hit the tree we all run to the back bedroom and hide under the covers.
Another life long biker here as well, GL1800 rider. My coach gives me a bit more protection for sure, I have crashed at 70mph on one of my bikes after hitting a dog, road rash top to bottom didnt break a bone. One of our local riders hit a rock turning into the parking lot at 5mpg and dumped it,hit his head and died.
We can only protect ourselves so much God is in control.
Drive Safe, Have Fun, life is short as is! God Bless.
Eric


2011 American Tradition 42p
Silverleaf
Pressure Pro
00 Jeep GC
Honda GL1800
2050SS Bayliner



Posted By: PopBeavers on 06/12/09 07:08am

When my son and daughter were young we would borrow FILs MH. Our destinations were not more than 4 hours away (Yosemite). They were always strapped in to the dinette seat. The only straps were lap belts, no shoulder straps.

Maybe duration of the trip is another variable. Some people need to use the restroom more often than others. When traveling long distances in the car, we stop to use the restroom every time the car needs gas. That is about every 300 to 350 miles or so and about 5 to 6 hours between stops.

My longest trip was just DW and I in the car. San Jose to Angel Fire NM. Stops were:
1. Mojave
2. Flagstaff
3. Albuquerque
4. Angel Fire

For a trip like that, if you have children or adults that can not wait that long then I can see why it becomes tempting to get up to use the restroom.

Several people have told me that they would not like to travel with me. [emoticon]


Posted By: GTN_and_Catz on 06/11/09 09:27pm

pingpong wrote:

Two words...DUCK TAPE! Just duck tape them in and they won't go anywhere! [emoticon]

That's what we do ... and it works:
[image]


Posted By: Tinstar on 06/11/09 10:16pm

You know what I would like to see????????

Each poster, Yea's and Nay's, should post if they have children that ride with them in the m/h.

I'd bet most of the Yea's (yes they must be buckled) don't have children riding with them on a regular basis. The Nay's and the not so hard liners, have kids.

YOU KNOW IT!!!!


Posted By: 3sacrwd on 06/08/09 09:13pm

Well put Pingpong. Most of the time, I am sure your kids will be buckled. For the infrequent times (comparatively) that they will be laying in their bunks, I personally would do the same thing. The heavier the coach, the better protected they are in a front end collision.


pingpong wrote:

Two words...DUCK TAPE!

Just duck tape them in and they won't go anywhere! [emoticon]

I have older kids...they buckle in their perspective couches (usually)...but we do allow them to be unbuckled for brief times to go to the bathroom and even sometimes to go back and sleep...I guess we consider it a "perk" to owning a motorhome. Good or bad...that's what we do.

I guess if we were to get in an accident, I'd rather have them in seatbelts...that way if something really bad happened, I wouldn't have the guilt...I could say, "well they were in their seatbelts"...vs. someone else saying, "why weren't they in their seatbelts?"

But we certainly hope that we are never in an accident...but of course...no one can ever predict when an accident will happen...so it's probably best to use seatbelts when at all possible.



1997 Forest River Reflection 38' DP



Posted By: BWhite on 06/09/09 02:11pm

robatthelake wrote:

I haven't ridden in a School Bus for a long time but when I did there certainly wasn't much Padding and in fact there were metal bars grab bars that would have been nasty things to bump into in the event of a crash.


Modern School bus seats have high backrests and are nicely padded . So in a front or back accident the students are in a "padded box " The seatbelt debate for busses is a great debate some districts require them


Posted By: TKrussman on 06/07/09 10:01pm

This is a question that causes arguments in all of the forums. All of us want to walk around the MH. The poster that said to buckle up everyone just before an accident had it right.

Although every accident has its own dynamics, in CARS the statistics I've seen state that buckled up is much safer than not for the front passengers. Again in cars, someone in the back seat would probably bounce against the back of the front seat--better than hitting the dash--and the last time I saw statistics on safety belts and back seat occupants, the survival rate was greater for back seat occupants (belted or not belted)to the point that it was quesitonable if seat belts provided a greater level of safety. Although I don't know, I suspect that those results were the basis of only front passengers requiring seatbelts in some states.

IMHO, I'd rather be belted in somehow in an accident than not. But how you are belted in is important. Lying down with my feet facing the front of the MH and my head the rear, a belt around my waist could become a noose in a front-end colision as I'm propelled toward the front of the MH. If nothing stops me from moving forward, the seat belt could, IMO, become more deadly than not having anything restraining me. Lying perpendicular in the MH and being belted across the waist makes more sense.

But an important side of the argument is "will there be an accident, and if so , what will be the effect?" I know my MH will not run any races, and cannot stop on a dime. I not only try to drive defensively and relatively slowly, I try to be overly cautious. Because of my driving habits, I should be less likely to run into problems than an average driver. So hopefully I and other MH drivers that drive defensively are less likely to get into an accident than others.

Of course in case of a problem, I cannot stop as quickly as a car. One poster said basically that mass wins. If all else is equal, that is always correct. Physics states that 2 objects of equal weight (mass) and speed hit perfectly head on, both will immediatly stop. Of course the simple physics view is that they are both solid and crumpling is not an issue.

The equation that is important is MV^2 (Mass*(Velocity squared)). If the velocities are the same, mass wins. You can work the math, but an 9 ton MH will "lose" to a 1 ton car if the car is going over 3Xs faster than the MH. The point is that mass does not always win.

An interesting note is that when the VW bug was first introduced into the US in the late 50's and early 60's, it was reportedly safer to drive in than the motor yachts of that age. The manuverability of the VWs meant that it was in less accidents. Unfortunately, if you were in an accident, the possibility of being killed was higher than the other cars. But on average you were safer. So mass is not everything, other factors play into the final results.

What is also important is how a MH will react in an accident. The ability of cars to survive accidents is well regulated and reported. I believe that trucks are regulated to a much less level. And I have never heard or seen crash tests on Class A MHs. I would expect Class C MHs to have some of the safety of the vehicles they are built on--but obviously modified by the modifications to make them a MH. A MH is not built for an acident--an aluminum or fiberglass shell around foam insulation supported by an aluminum frame is not built for a crash. Among other things, where the mass is, and how it is secured in place (how the MH acts as a solid object) will have an effect on the results.

So mass wins, unless the speeds are significantly different. Solid objects with equal mass and velocity will stop, but MHs are not solid and will crumple, possibly more that a car. Inertia suggests that anything not strapped down will continue moving at the original speed until it hits something (ouch). And just belting in is not necessarily safe if the seat belts don't protect from the person from moving.

So what is the answer? It is really a judgement call, which all of the argument cannot settle, because everyone's judgement is different. IMHO, the large majority of the time, it is safer for everyone to to have their seatbelt on. However, seatbelts are for the unusual occurance. They've proven important for people in cars, especially in the front seat, where the probability is lower of having injuries (but it is not 100% so there must be cases where not wearing seatbelts must be safer). But because they are for unusual occurances, IMO if precautions are taken, it is relatively safe (not 100%) to not wear proper restraints at certain times.

Because of the fact that most MH drivers don't try to imitate NASCAR drivers and because of mass, I believe that it is usually OK for people to be unbelted in the MH. But I cannot ignore the dangers of quick movements (traffic, wind) and cannot recommend not having everyone safely belted in.

You pay your money and you take your chances.


Posted By: pingpong on 06/07/09 10:25pm

Two words...DUCK TAPE!

Just duck tape them in and they won't go anywhere! [emoticon]

I have older kids...they buckle in their perspective couches (usually)...but we do allow them to be unbuckled for brief times to go to the bathroom and even sometimes to go back and sleep...I guess we consider it a "perk" to owning a motorhome. Good or bad...that's what we do.

I guess if we were to get in an accident, I'd rather have them in seatbelts...that way if something really bad happened, I wouldn't have the guilt...I could say, "well they were in their seatbelts"...vs. someone else saying, "why weren't they in their seatbelts?"

But we certainly hope that we are never in an accident...but of course...no one can ever predict when an accident will happen...so it's probably best to use seatbelts when at all possible.


Husband, Wife, 2 kids, 3 cats
2007 Newmar KSDP 3910
2007 Jeep Liberty

"Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again!"

"How is it one careless match can start a forest fire, but it takes a whole box to start a campfire?"



Posted By: 50pascals on 06/07/09 10:38pm

Hey someone actually read my post!!

Alphamonk wrote:

50pascals -that's a great idea about the cargo nets. Maybe we should all install one behind the driver's area to keep the other occupants from crashing into us or the windshields!


Yep - and they were free too. 100% not used and free.

riggarob wrote:

Man, your good. I LIKE IT !!!!! Robbie



Robbie, did you notice no one else dared comment on my "other lifestyle choices" and their risks? I've been practicing that one! Always a good one to bring up when we are arguing about "protecting the children." But I could go WAY off on a tangent there.


Posted By: JohnMo on 06/07/09 10:57pm

Several have pointed out that the seat belts are not always anchored all that well and that even when belted-in the dinette table is likely to cause injury in an accident. Not to mention the lateral forces one might experience while belted sideways on a couch in a rapid deceleration situation.

I think some may find it easier not to think about the harsh realities of what goes on in any significant crash because they are deriving false comfort from using their seat belts.

For the minor incidents where the driver must swerve unexpectedly or jab the brakes, seat belts will help keep the passengers in their seats. I expect my kids to be belted-in unless they are between point A and point B. Once they get where they're going, I expect them to make use of the seat belt that's available. But, really, in the most serious accidents, it's just going to be ugly all around with our without seat belts.

Regarding bunks, which we have, I let my older kids ride there quite a lot when road conditions are appropriate. I think the compartmentalization that's been referenced as part of the design in school buses applies to the bunks to some degree. There's a whole lot more structure and a lot less space to move around in the bunks than there is on the couch, for example.

I still can't believe that my dad, Mr. Safety, used to let us ride in the bunk over the cab of a Class C. That has to be the worst place I can think of, but what a view from up there!


2009 Winnebago 35J Ford
2003 Suzuki XL-7
Blue-Ox Aventa LX


Posted By: riggarob on 06/08/09 07:13am

50pascals wrote:

Hey someone actually read my post!!

Alphamonk wrote:

50pascals -that's a great idea about the cargo nets. Maybe we should all install one behind the driver's area to keep the other occupants from crashing into us or the windshields!


Yep - and they were free too. 100% not used and free.

riggarob wrote:

Man, your good. I LIKE IT !!!!! Robbie



Robbie, did you notice no one else dared comment on my "other lifestyle choices" and their risks? I've been practicing that one! Always a good one to bring up when we are arguing about "protecting the children." But I could go WAY off on a tangent there.




Aye, me likes ta thinks the tother way round, too !! Robbie [emoticon]


Posted By: D.R.Bain on 06/08/09 10:53am

dtipainter wrote:

Hello,

We are relatively new owners of a Class A Discovery. My wife and I disagree on the safety of allowing the kids to sleep or watch TV in their bunkhouse beds while traveling.

Do people typically allow kids get in their beds while traveling? Or should they be seated with seat belts secured? Is any statistical information available on this subject?

Thanks
Phil


Phil,

You know things change, what we did as kids seems to be frowned upon now.
I am from a large family and we used to travel all over the country in the back of a pick up with a topper and two benches to sit on. It suited us just fine. I worked with a guy that was traveling that way and rolled the truck and nearly decapitated his kids when the topper seperated in the accident.

Are the bunks in a slide out? with it slid in you would have a little saftey if you stopped abruptly, but all bets are off in an accident.

I was driving my blazer through an intersection and had a kid run a red light and hit me in the right rear wheel. since the majority of the force spun my back end to the left you wouldn't think I would have gotten bathed in my megga soft drink in the cup holder. Also in the force of the collision, anything in the very back also flew up and landed on the floor of the rear seat.

I guess what I am trying to say is the forces in an accident are unpredictable at best, and not to be challenged. Since the stats show that seat belts save lives you would be better off having them buckled up.


Dan, 2007 Damon Daybreak 3270


Posted By: wazone on 06/08/09 11:30am

This is ancient information, however from 1971-1984 our two young daughters always did everything (within reason) in the motorhome while we were driving. This included: bathroom use, sleeping, eating, playing, etc. We did much downhill skiing in those days, including annual 3000+ mile round trips to the ski areas west of Denver. Probably close to 1/2 of our travel was during the winter, many times in snowy conditions. Many others motorhome owners did the same. I don't recall having seat belts in motorhomes at that time. Now 25-38 years later, I look back on this with fond memories. Would I do the same now? Probably not, but that was then and now is very different. Life and activities are much more restrictive now, as we fear the ever present litigation and big brother watching over every action.


Posted By: riggarob on 06/08/09 03:30pm

wazone wrote:

This is ancient information, however from 1971-1984 our two young daughters always did everything (within reason) in the motorhome while we were driving. This included: bathroom use, sleeping, eating, playing, etc. We did much downhill skiing in those days, including annual 3000+ mile round trips to the ski areas west of Denver. Probably close to 1/2 of our travel was during the winter, many times in snowy conditions. Many others motorhome owners did the same. I don't recall having seat belts in motorhomes at that time. Now 25-38 years later, I look back on this with fond memories. Would I do the same now? Probably not, but that was then and now is very different. Life and activities are much more restrictive now, as we fear the ever present litigation and big brother watching over every action.



Man, that last sentence sez it all !! I've gone 18 years w/o a fence around my pool. Now I'm so paranoid, that I'm in the process of putting one up. No neighbors around, and I still feel like every kid, in the hood, wants to jump in MY pool, and drown, so their irresponible parents can get all I own, w/ a law suit ! Man, look what "BIG BRO" has done to us. Robbie [emoticon]


Posted By: chuckster11 on 06/07/09 05:42pm

I think the best idea is to use some form of restraint when children are involved.
Unlike adults that can and do get up and move around in a moving motorhome, children really are at the mercy of the good judgment of adults.
Yes we all remember carting kids down the road without seat belts before they were made mandatory but we were also very lucky that nothing serious happened in those miles--I recognize that now.
Last thing any of us want is to carry the guilt of an injured or deceased child because we didn't exercise proper care.
Belt them up.


Posted By: gunny357 on 06/07/09 06:34pm

To answer the original question.

No


Posted By: MargaretB on 06/07/09 07:49pm

May I chime in? I have a few ideas toshare.

1. People who talk about bouncing around in the car when they were kids - were those cars traveling at freeway speeds? Were the roads as congested then as they are now? Just asking - no need to answer here.

2. People who say that life is unsafe and unpredictable: Yes, it is. So we take the best precautions we can, especially when are kids are involved. We have to get out of bed, we have to drive, sometimes when we're tired, and so on. But what on earth does that have to do with the subject at hand? Given the number of unknown variables in our lives, doesn't it behoove us to do s much as we can to keep ourselves and our kids safe when we can? We can't control everything, but why not control what we can where safety is involved? Why would anyone risk his kids' safety for a principle?

3. I think it's very important to train kids to keep themselves safe in every way possible. That includes wearing seat-belts in moving vehicles. ALL moving vehicles. It's easier to train them to do that than to try to explain why we do it in some vehicles but not in others; they don't care about that. Kids need consistency; variations confuse them. Getting them into the habit of wearing a seat belt every time they get into a vehicle is easier than trying to explain the exceptions, and safer.

4. Finally, we know what harm can come to them if they aren't belted in and there's an incident. But what harm can come to them if they ARE belted in? If it can't hurt and might help, why not?

So why not take the safest, most consistent way?


Posted By: Daveinet on 06/07/09 08:02pm

I do have to chuckle at everyone who keeps bring up car accidents as examples. Pretty silly unrelated comparison.


Posted By: PopBeavers on 06/07/09 08:23pm

Daveinet wrote:

I do have to chuckle at everyone who keeps bring up car accidents as examples. Pretty silly unrelated comparison.


I agree, cars are much safer to ride in than a MH. In an MH, even extra protection beyond what you would do in a car is desirable.

I have not yet seen an MH with crumple zones or air bags comparable to a modern car.


Posted By: riggarob on 06/07/09 08:50pm

Man, your good. I LIKE IT !!!!! Robbie


----------------------------------------------------------------------


Watch some NHTSA test dummy crash test videos THEN decide!

If we watched the videos, we would never drive, or eat meat, or almost everything we do in our daily lives.

One last question for the seat belt supporters who will flame me.

Do you smoke around your kids?

Smoking and second hand smoke is the highest injury rate activity we encounter on a regular basis.

Do you ever drive when you're tired?

Ever drink alcohol?

If you're worried about health and safety stop smoking, drinking, driving, get a radon test, tear the carpet out of your house, remove all your furniture and fabrics, and then never go downhill skiing.

The above activities drop your chances for injury by some astronomical number - like almost to zero.

Clearly the answer is that there is some acceptable level of risk in any activity that we all have learned to live with or accept.

I strongly dislike half-fact arguments when the underlying lifestyle risks are so much worse.


Posted By: moparmaga2 on 06/07/09 08:57pm

I have to wonder why the safety police on here drive a class A at all. I am having to stifle my chuckles at the safety police who think that the "seatbelts" installed on the couches and dinettes of Class RVs are going to do anything for their passengers in other than a parking lot accident.

My Couch seatbelts are connected to the TINY metal frame of the pull out bed in the couch. Yes, the part that pulls out. I guess if you were ever in an accident, the bed would pull out, and you would be along for the ride. Check out the so called "seatbelts" in the dinette. They are secured to the flimsiest metal possible. Additionally, your children will think that you are the second spawn of Hitler for making them sit up straight with belt tight in an uncomfortable dinette for 10 hours a day. If the belt is not VERY tight, they will have a nice table in their abdomen in the event of a crash.

Look at what your seatbelts are fastened to. Even if it is the wood floor, that is not going to do squat.

Additionally, I FIRMLY BELIEVE that if I were to roll over, I would want to be thrown outside the RV. I cannot imagine being belted in while the TV's, ROOF AC, ROOF, KNIVES, MICROWAVE, CHAIRS, CABINETS, TONS of MIRRORS AND MIRRORED CABINET DOORS ETC ETC fall down on top of me.


Posted By: RoadLife on 06/07/09 09:04pm

no


ROADLIFE

RV Part Timers Blog

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Pancho - border terrier



Posted By: dtipainter on 06/07/09 09:10pm

OK, I guess I asked for it. I really haven't heard anything that would help me convince the wife that traveling in a confined bunk area with the cargo net in place would be safe. Although, I hear some folks somewhat agreeing with the statement, I haven't seen the hardcore numbers/statistics that I was hoping to see.

I have to give this debate to the "pro-seatbelt folks" and the wife. Our family will continue to use belts while traveling down the road!

Thanks for all the discussions!
Phil


Posted By: bryantclan on 06/07/09 09:14pm

I have been sitting off to the side because I have added to the other 4 treads over the last few years on this topic.

I have a bunk modal now and my last Class A was as well.

As you can see from my Sig, I have 3 kids ranging from 9 to 2 and 1/2.

For the 9 year old and the 5 year old, they are allowed up when they ask and only after I confirm I am OK with it, the 2 and 1/2 is in a car seat. Otherwise they are in seats, seat belted in. If I am driving at night in the middle of no where and the and boys want to go to sleep on the bottom bunk I am OK with it.

That said, on one of the trips with another person I RV with his 5 year old was very badly hurt when the driver was forced to get hard on the brakes. While wearing his seat belt sitting at the dinette, he broke 3 ribs and had a number of other injury's. So lets not fool ourselves in a "bad" accident with the expectation of the two front seats none of the other positions are going far well. The seat belts are there to keep you from bouncing out of your seat not protect you if something truly bad happens.

MargaretB wrote:

May I chime in? I have a few ideas toshare.

1. People who talk about bouncing around in the car when they were kids - were those cars traveling at freeway speeds? Were the roads as congested then as they are now? Just asking - no need to answer here.

Congested no .. Highway speeds yes, and at 75 most of the time.

2. People who say that life is unsafe and unpredictable: Yes, it is. So we take the best precautions we can, especially when are kids are involved. We have to get out of bed, we have to drive, sometimes when we're tired, and so on. But what on earth does that have to do with the subject at hand? Given the number of unknown variables in our lives, doesn't it behoove us to do s much as we can to keep ourselves and our kids safe when we can? We can't control everything, but why not control what we can where safety is involved? Why would anyone risk his kids' safety for a principle?

3. I think it's very important to train kids to keep themselves safe in every way possible. That includes wearing seat-belts in moving vehicles. ALL moving vehicles. It's easier to train them to do that than to try to explain why we do it in some vehicles but not in others; they don't care about that. Kids need consistency; variations confuse them. Getting them into the habit of wearing a seat belt every time they get into a vehicle is easier than trying to explain the exceptions, and safer.

4. Finally, we know what harm can come to them if they aren't belted in and there's an incident. But what harm can come to them if they ARE belted in?

See above.

If it can't hurt and might help, why not?

So why not take the safest, most consistent way?



Shaun & Jarese
3 Kids, Nicholas 15, Alex 11, Cassie 8 Years
Denver, Co
Newmar AllStar 3950 (mid-engine diesel)
2007 Honda Odyssey EX-L Toad or Jeep Grand




Posted By: steelpony5555 on 06/07/09 09:21pm

The way I look at it you're going down the road in a house. Now I dont think it is good to let the little buggers run around while under way, but to go to the rest room and even sleep in a bunk can't be any worse then smacking their little faces off the dinette. Remember there are no shoulder belts. Just hope they can dodge the toaster as it whizzes by.


14 Cedar Creek Silverback 29IK
10 Dodge 3500 Dually Laramie 6.7 Diesel
14 Chrysler 300
07 Pearl White Ultra Classic (My new Baby)

Texas Boomers---Stop by for a Margie some time!


Posted By: GTN_and_Catz on 06/07/09 09:24pm

Wow! This thread is like driving past a train wreck. I don't wanna read ... I don't wanna read ... uh, OK, maybe I'll just peek a little at the next four pages[emoticon]


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