Safety of children when driving

2016-09-21 06:00

PARENTS play a vital role in ensuring their children are safe while in a vehicle

The use of a child car seat for all children under the age of three was made compulsory from 1 May, 2015.

While it is law to use child car seats for children under the age of three, this does not mean that adults should ignore the need to restrain older children. Make sure they are restrained appropriately.

ER24 offers the following advice in regard to the proper safety restraints: • Infants should ride rear-facing at least until they are a year old.

• Once they exceed the weight or height limit set by the manufacturer of the infant safety seat, they should continue to ride rear-facing in a convertible safety seat. It is best to keep toddlers rear-facing as long as possible.

• When they have outgrown this seat, they should use a forward-facing safety seat with a full harness. This should be used until they exceed the weight and/or height limit set by the manufacturer of the seat.

• Children who have outgrown a convertible safety seat should use a booster seat until they are at least four feet.

• Children who are tall enough to wear an adult seat belt should still ride in the back seat until they are 13 years old. Adjust the seat belt so the lap belt crosses the child's upper thighs and the diagonal belt crosses the upper chest at a point between the neck and shoulder.

Also remember, it is vital that you make use of a seat belt as well. Failure to do so could result in you being fined or, in the case of a collision, you possibly sustaining critical or fatal injuries.

- Chitra Bodasing Harduth, ER24 spokesperson.

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