Pumping While Driving — Would You Try It?

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ByThe Bump Editors
Updated
Feb 2017
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One multitasking mom is taking her breast pumping skills on the road. And we mean literally — Leslie Goldman is pumping while driving.

The new mom shared her story — and a brief how-to — with FitPregnancy, explaining that necessity drove her to PWD (pumping while driving) when she was late for a friend’s baby shower. And all it took was one successful attempt to open the flood gates.

“Since that bright summer day in 2012, when countless truck drivers no doubt saw my big rigs, I have pumped en route to work meetings, while squiring our toddler to preschool, on Thanksgiving road trips, in line at the Starbucks drive-through and everywhere in between,” Goldman says. “It’s an incredible timesaver — instead of sitting on the couch and channel surfing for 30 minutes, I can kill two birds with one pump and arrive at my destination drained and with a sense of accomplishment.”

But Goldman reminds moms that if they want to PWD, they need to do it safely. This means only using an electric pump, and hooking it up before you start driving. Here’s her recommended sequence:

  1. Make sure your cup holders are empty so you can easily stash your bottles there when finished.
  2. Fasten seatbelt. (Do this first, otherwise you might disrupt the tubes.)
  3. Situate your shirt so your hands-free bra is exposed.
  4. Plug in pump. (I use one that plugs into the car adapter but you could also use a battery pack.)
  5. Attach breast shields and tubes.
  6. Turn pump on and begin driving.

Is this legal? Depends who you ask. Goldman spoke to an officer in the Chicago police precinct, who wasn’t particularly receptive. “The law reads you cannot do anything that might distract you while driving – cell phones, eating food, anything,” the policeman told her. But Portland, Ore. gave her the green light, as long as she doesn’t swerve or drive recklessly (full disclosure: the Portland cop was a mom).

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