Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Taxis and Babies

Another way Lucy is a true New Yorker — her first car ride was a yellow taxi. When we were discharged from the hospital, we just walked outside and hailed a cab.

Here's something you may not know: Babies aren't required to be in child seats when they ride in taxis in New York. (This is different from California, which allows no exceptions for cabs.)

Going above and beyond the legal requirement.

It's a little unnerving to parents who are normally afraid to drive 3 feet without having their babies secured, belted and harnessed. But you can imagine why the law makes sense in New York. Often parents are out and about and suddenly need to get home quickly. That means hailing a cab, and it's not like anyone thinks to haul along a car seat while walking the streets of Manhattan.

(I've noted before that airlines don't require you to secure your infant either. In fact, they often don't allow you to strap an "infant-in-arms passenger" into the parent's seat belt.)

However, NewYork-Presbyterian has stricter standards. The hospital requires you to have a child seat for your newborn, whether you're going home in a cab or private vehicle. (And it's not like we would do anything less for our Lulu.)

One thing no parent can control: the competence or condition of the cab driver. Ours started nodding off while we were crossing the Queensboro Bridge. This would have been a good time for Lucy to start shrieking, but she slept the whole time.

Fortunately, we made it home safely. Welcome to New York, kid!