That’s the message from WA Police following a number of car accidents in which children have been poorly restrained or not at all.
The final straw came last week when a three-year-old girl was taken to hospital after a crash in Yangebup at the intersection of Beeliar Drive and Dunraven Drive when a blue Honda Civic collided with a yellow Hyundai Getz.
Police said the girl was unrestrained in the back seat at the time of the crash.
Traffic Enforcement Group Sergeant Mish Iskra said children ‘become like a projectile’ in a crash.
‘We’ve had a spate of accidents involving children where they’ve either been restrained poorly or not at all, which is a real concern for us because children are small and very vulnerable,’ she said.
‘We see kids unrestrained on a day-to-day basis – children walking around in the back seat at traffic lights, while driving along the freeway, or on suburban streets. It’s concerning and those people are penalised by us.’
Children are required to be in a child restraint until the age of four, and then a booster seat until the age of seven. It is against the law for children under seven years to sit in the front seat.
Cockburn Police operations manager Nicole Ford said unrestrained or incorrectly restrained children were an ongoing local issue.
Sgt Ford said WA police were working to address the problem through active patrols and information stalls set up at local centres.
‘The message is clear: ‘Buckle up, every child, every trip’. When it’s too late, it’s too late,’ she said.
More online at childcarrestraints.com.au