As part of Lincolnshire Police’s campaign aimed at drivers to “Belt Up, Hang Up, Ease Up, the force is highlighting the use of child restraints in vehicles.
Response Sergeant Mike Templeman said that he has found children sat in footwells, sitting on laps of other passengers and unrestrained in vehicles, and is aiming to share the information to keep everyone safe.
Over the last five years, 176 people have been issued with a fixed penalty notice for not having a child safely carried in a car.
Drivers are responsible for all the people in a vehicle and may face prosecution if a child under 14 is not safely fastened in.
He said: “I have been asked on numerous occasions about the law regarding how children can be safely carried in a vehicle.
“I thought it would be useful to write to parents and now we’d like to reach grandparents and others who carry children in their vehicle, who may not have seen the letter. I hope this helps with any confusion around the subject.
“I can’t believe some of the risks drivers take in relation to children. Children are our most precious thing, and no amount of prosecution matches the guilt of them being injured or worse killed, when it could have been prevented.
“Please do not risk the safety of your children or prosecution if caught by the police, Let’s keep children safe and Lincolnshire’s road as safe as possible.”
Information on the gov.uk website in relation to child restraints in vehicles is as follows:
- Children must normally use a child car seat until they’re 12 years old or 135 centimetres tall, whichever comes first.
- Children over 12 or more than 135cm tall must wear a seatbelt.
- You can choose a child car seat based on your child’s height or weight.
- Height-based seats are known as ‘i-Size’ seats. They must be rear facing until your child is over 15 months old. Your child can use a forward-facing child car seat when they’re over 15 months old.
- You must check the seat to make sure it’s suitable for the height of your child.
- Only EU-approved height-based child car seats can be used in the UK. These have a label showing a capital ‘E’ in a circle and ‘R129’.
- The seat your child can use (and the way they must be restrained in it) depends on their weight.
- Only EU-approved weight-based child car seats can be used in the UK. These have a label showing a capital ‘E’ in a circle and ‘ECE R44’.
- You may be able to choose from more than one type of seat in the group for your child’s weight.
Further information can be found in a leaflet produced by The Department of Transport Seat Belts and Child Restraints (think.gov.uk).