A report by Aberdeenshire Council has revealed that all of the child car seats tested in Turriff last year were incorrectly fitted putting the children in serious danger of injury.
The report summarizes the findings of 14 car seat clinics carried out carried as part of the Good Egg Safety campaign across Aberdeenshire between June and September last year. The car seat clinics took place at locations such as supermarkets and leisure centres in each of the six areas of Aberdeenshire.
Out of 244 seats that were checked, 78% were incorrectly fitted and 40 of the seats had major faults.
62 car seats were found to be fitted correctly fitted and 136 parents were given further advice.
People who parked in the Parent and Toddler spaces at the arranged locations were offered car seat checks and advice free of charge.
Shockingly, the report highlighted that 100% of car seats checked in Turriff were fitted incorrectly in contrast with 50% in Peterhead, which had the lowest levels of incorrectly-fitted seats.
All of the 9 seats examined at the clinic held on the High Street car park were found to be incorrectly fitted. 2 of the seats were found to have major faults with all the remaining 7 having minor faults or defects. All of these faults and defects could have put the child using the seat in serious danger of injury, had the vehicle been involved in a collision.
Chairman of Aberdeenshire Council’s Infrastructure Services Committee, Councillor Peter Argyle, said
Car seat clinics give local parents a valuable opportunity to have their car seats checked.
Children under the age of 12 or those smaller than 135cm must use the appropriate seat for their height and weight.
Incompatible seats, loose belts or harnesses, or incorrect routings are common faults which can increase the risk of severe injury or sometimes be fatal.
Vice-chairman of the committee, Councillor Alan S Buchan, said
It is vital that children travel in cars as safely as possible.
Parents can seek expert advice when buying or fitting their child’s car seat. We hope that by training staff who have direct contact with children and their parents will help to deliver this important message and ultimately lower the number of incorrectly-fitted car seats in Aberdeenshire.
As a result of these findings, Aberdeenshire Council is setting up in-service training sessions for nursery nurses, health visitors and midwives to raise awareness of the importance of fitting children’s car seats correctly.
The training aims to give these staff a better understanding of what people should be looking for in a car seat and how to buy one that is compatible with their child and car.
For more information on buying or fitting your child’s car seat, please visit: http://www.goodeggcarsafety.com/scotland/