Autism - Wandering

Eloping is a serious concern for many parents of children with special needs. Eloping refers to the impulse some children have to run, bolt, or wander.

You probably know someone with autism. But did you know half of these children will wander from a safe place such as a home or school?

STOP. SEEK. STAY. Stop to help when you see a child who appears lost. Seek assistance from police. Stay until help arrives.

Dangers - Children with autism often have an extremely high attraction to water (streams, ponds, lakes, rivers, creeks, storm-water basins, swimming pools). Children with autism are also drawn toward busy streets.

Autism and Wandering - If a chid with autism is missing search water first.

Children with Autism Wandering - Children with autism are more likely to wander away from a safe environment. Many of these children have gone missing for significant periods of time.

Of Children who Wander


If they do wander call 911 immediatley. Gather a search team. Search his or her favorite places (local park, store, etc). Create an Emergency Form - Prepare a form with your missing child's picture, weight, eye and hair color, clothes he was wearing when he went missing. Circulate paper to all neighbors.

Autistic child - may not respond to verbal commands

Swimming lessons are an important part of autism safety. Accidental drowning accounts for approximately 90% of wandering-related deaths in children with autism.

Most parents of a typical child see water and think of fun. All parents of an autistic child see water and think of danger.

SafetyNet by LoJack - Nothing is more frightening than the thought of a loved one with autism, Alzheimer's or other cognitive impairment becoming lost.

Hello. I have autism. If you find me please call: xxx-xxxx Thank You!