How to: Avoiding Shopping Cart Accidents and Other Dangers

December 18, 2020

How to: Avoiding Shopping Cart Accidents and Other Dangers

Parents are well aware that keeping a newborn or a squirrely toddler well behaved and safe in their shopping cart is a challenge. 

You may be primarily concerned with keeping the kids from sneaking unplanned purchases into the cart or yelling their heads off and disturbing the other patrons, but kids and cart safety may be more precarious than you imagine.

According to the Washington Post, about 530,494 children were injured in cart-related accidents during a study from 1990-2011 by the Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. This amounts to “66 children per day, treated in an emergency department.”

The study concluded, as reported by the Post, “Falls from a shopping cart accounted for the majority of injuries (70.4 percent), followed by running into/falling over the cart, cart tip-overs and entrapment of extremities in the cart.”

Add the current pandemic into the mix, and keeping your children happy and healthy becomes an overwhelming task.

Protecting Your Child From COVID 

Shop at Conscientious Stores

Look for markets that require staff and shoppers to wear masks. If the baggers have the masks hanging halfway off their faces, try to find another grocery store that’s being more careful.

Make sure they’re sterilizing carts and have a shield between the shoppers and the checkout clerk.

Bring Supplies to Sterilize

Keep hand sanitizer and sterilizing wipes on hand. Wipe down the parts of the cart you’ll be touching and use a shopping cart cover for your older children to keep them safe with a germ barrier between them and the dirty surface.

Just toss the cover into the wash when you get home and it will be ready for the next time you go out.

Wipe down any areas you’ll have a lot of contact with, such as the self-checkout, with a sanitizing wipe before using them.

It may seem extreme, but once you reach your car, use a safe hand sanitizer on you and your children.

Face Shields for Children

Binxy Baby Face Shields are not yet FDA approved but could improve your chances of protecting your child from saliva, sprays, splashes, droplets and dust. 

Your child won’t quickly outgrow this product, so you’ll actually have something you won’t need to constantly replace.

Wash and reuse. Make sure your child is monitored while wearing a face shield. For ages two and up.

Accidents at the Store


One of the main causes of shopping cart accidents is when parents allow siblings to ride on the outside of the cart. Whether they grasp onto the sides or ride on the end, the result is often that the cart will tip over, taking the baby with it. 

Explain the dangers of messing with the cart to older siblings and try to distract them from games involving the grocery cart. Do consider a cart cover for siblings old enough to sit up, but who are not too big for the cart seat. This protects them from a germy environment. And they’ll be strapped in!


Any child in any cart must be strapped in. 

Babies wriggle, and toddlers and older children can rarely resist the temptation to stand and reach for items. Or just stand up because they can. No one likes to sit in any position for long. Even the most trustworthy, older children can cause a cart to tip over when sitting in the bigger basket area.

Finally, stay with your cart at all times. Sometimes it’s easy to take a step or two off to snag an item from your list.  Be within grabbing distance of the cart at all times in case of emergency.

Good luck, parents! And happy shopping!