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Department Launches Annual In-car Safety Campaign 7 September 2010

The Department of Infrastructure’s Road Safety Unit has launched its annual in-car safety campaign to coincide with the return of local children to school.

Research in the UK has shown that eight out of ten child safety seats are incorrectly fitted, this campaign has been launched to raise awareness of safety seat requirements and how to fit them correctly.

Following new legislation introduced in 2007, children are now required to use appropriate restraints for their age and height until they are 12 years of age or 4ft 5ins/1.35m tall.

Gordon Edwards, Road Safety Manager, said:

‘It is vital that children of any age are carried safely and in appropriate safety seats that have been specifically designed for their smaller size and weight. Adult seatbelts afford less protection in a collision for children who are both under the age of 12 and less than 4ft 5ins/1.35m tall. Drivers need to make sure that any passengers in their cars are wearing the correct seat belt/child restraint before setting out on their journey.’

Minister for Infrastructure, Phil Gawne MHK said:

‘With the schools returning for the new school year this week, it is vital for parents and carers to understand the type of child seat required for each child travelling in their car. It is also important to ensure that your car is not overloaded, it is tempting to pick up friends and family if it is raining or cold but if you are doing this please ensure that you have the correct restraints available for every person in the vehicle.’

Sergeant Dave Dobbie of the Roads Policing Unit said:

‘Ensuring the safety of ourselves and the people travelling in our cars should be in the forefront of our minds. If you have any queries about the law you should contact the Police or the Road Safety Unit to ensure that you comply. With the new school term starting we will be strongly enforcing the in-car safety laws to ensure that everyone is kept safe when travelling in their cars.’

A leaflet to raise awareness of the requirements has been produced by the Road Safety Team and is available from the Sea Terminal reception or by visiting www.gov.im/infrastructure

The Road Safety Team offers a car seat checking service by appointment please contact 686671.

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