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Police and council offer child car seat safety checks

This news article was published more than a year ago. Some of the information may no longer be accurate.

Published: 13/06/2014

Officers from South Gloucestershire Council’s road safety team and Avon and Somerset Police are joining forces to carry out child car seat safety checks at Southey Park in Kingswood on Wednesday 18 June.

Between 8.30am and 4pm, police officers will stop vehicles carrying young people to allow our road safety team to check if child car seats are fitted correctly. We are offering these free checks to give reassurance to parents that their children are safe and secure when travelling by car.

Young people travelling as passengers will also be measured to ensure they are the correct height to safely use seatbelts. The legal requirement is 135cm unless they are sitting on a booster seat.

Previous safety checks carried out in South Gloucestershire have shown that around two thirds of all child car seats are fitted incorrectly. A total of 94 child car seats were checked at a similar event in Filton in May and of those we found 16 with major faults and 49 with minor faults.

Major faults included seats belts requiring re-routing and many of the minor faults were with harnesses that needed adjusting, headrests that had to be removed and twists in the seatbelts.

Road safety officer Pamela Williams said: “Many of the major faults found were due to seats belts requiring re-routing. This means that the seat has been fitted wrongly and the manufacturer’s instructions have not been followed.

“Minor faults included internal harnesses that were very loose requiring adjustment. In the event of a collision a loose harness could cause a child to be ejected from their child seat, so whilst it is classed as a minor fault this could be fatal in the event of a collision. Other minor adjustments include removal of headrests, these sometimes tend to get in the way of car seats being securely fitted into a vehicle, and twists in seatbelts, which can mean they are less effective in a collision.”

South Gloucestershire Police Neighbourhoods Inspector Bob Evely said: “Having the right child car seat, properly fitted, is really important to keep children safe. We have found that two out of every three seats aren’t fitted properly, so it’s really worth your time to come along and get yours checked over.
“Our neighbourhood teams are happy to work alongside the council at these checks to help to improve safety for all road users.”


Any parents, grandparents, childminders or carers who would like to have their child car seat checked voluntarily are welcome to stop by Southey Park, New Cheltenham Road, Kingswood, BS15 1TN between 8.30am and 4pm on Wednesday 18 June.

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