Project Shui for Tay-Sachs

How To Make a Car Bed

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Tay-Sachs Travel: 
How to Make a Special Needs Car Bed

Uploaded by  on Mar 5, 2012
http://www.projectshui.comTravel with a special needs child is challenging at best. Some kids are unable to sit up during car rides because they are at risk for vomiting and aspiration. There is no safe way to drive in the reclined position. Car beds are not available for kids over one month of age. Rather than have my special needs child travel unrestrained, I created a car bed for her. This video gives instructions on how to make a car bed.  

In summary, one needs a car bench (as opposed to bucket seats), a pack-and-play mattress pad, and at least two car seat anchors or similar straps with hooks to serve as tie-downs or seatbelts. The mattress pad is placed on the car bench with the velcro straps up by the head rests and the hooks at the bottom edge of the car bench. The side seatbelt is stretched over the pad and inserted into the buckle underneath. One strap fits over the pad by the crease of the seat and the other strap stretches across the back of the seat, over the pad, so that the mattress pad is completely secured and tied down by the car's seatbelt. The anchor straps are attached to the anchors behind the bench, and the clasps of the straps are brought up and over the seat back, over the child (when in the car bed), so they can be attached to the hooks on the bottom of the pack-and-play mattress pad. The car bed can be padded with pillows to make the ride more comfortable. If the anchor straps - turn- seatbelts are made taut, they can lift the bottom edge of the pad a bit, forming a scooped nest to help prevent sliding forward while driving. Pillows under this part of the pad can help as well. 

There are three hooks on the side of the pack-and-play mattress pad, so 3 anchor straps/car bed belts can be used. However, if one is placed over and around the head area, it might cause choking if near the neck area. I always used two straps, one which I placed under the arm (if turned on her side) to be clasped onto the middle hook, and one which stretched over the thighs and clasped onto the bottom hook.  

This car bed does not meet any safety standards, but I believe it is a safer way to travel than having the child to rest on her side without any restraints at all, allowing her to become a trajectory if the car stops suddenly. 

The car bed assembly photos were taken on December 7, 2011, one week before the passing of Rachaeli Fier, the star of the video, who succumbed to Infantile Tay-Sachs disease at the age of 9. She used this car bed for many years and we hope at least one child with special needs can ride comfortably and safely in a car because of this video. 

All of the in-car photos were taken with the ipad2 and the video was created with the imovie ipad app. 

Background musice: "Synth Pop Future Stars-I Just Can't Get Enough (as made famous by Depeche Mode)", sound recording administered by:

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