LARSOA concerned about new car seat laws
LARSOA has expressed concern about the lack of awareness of the new child car seat laws that come into effect later this month, and about how effective they will be.
The Association is calling on police to enforce the new laws, and on the government to tighten seatbelt laws even further to give protection to children travelling in taxis, minibuses, buses and coaches.
The new laws, which come into effect on 18 September, demand children up to 135cms (approximately 4ft 5ins) use the appropriate child restraint - for example a car seat or booster cushion - where seatbelts are fitted in cars. But there are exemptions for vehicles such as taxis, minibuses and coaches.
LARSOA chairman, Simon Ettinghausen (above), says: "We know the government is looking to tighten the laws governing seatbelts and child car seats even further and is planning to consult with taxi, private hire and coach companies. We urge the DfT to make this a priority.
"We encourage the police to work with road safety officers on joint educational activities to make drivers more aware of the new laws. We are sure most parents want to comply with the law but we call on the police to enforce the law with the hard core of drivers who don't comply," he added.
LARSOA spokesman, David Frost, said: "We are aware there is an amount of backlash against the new regulations, with older children under 135cms not wanting to go back to using a booster seat. Parents may be concerned about how to enforce this but it is important people understand the consequences of not using the correct restraint.
"Children are not small scale adults. Their heads weigh up to a third of their whole body weight and it takes many years of development before they reach adult proportions - so they can be terribly injured in a collision if the seatbelt is not in the right place."
17.07.06 - DfT announces date for new child restraint laws