Parents who do not put the safety of their children first will be in trouble with law as they’ll be obliged to strap their kids into car seats. The Minister of Transport, Dipuo Peters, has introduced the new regulation to the National Road Traffic Act, which will be effective as of 1 May. The regulation is introduced as an attempt to curb the deaths of children on South Africa's roads.
All children under three years will have to be strapped into a car seat when travelling in a car.
CapeTalk presenter Pippa Hudson spoke to the minister’s spokesperson, Tiyane Rikhotso, about the introduced regulation.
According to Rikhotso, those who are found contravening this regulation will be fined between R250 and R500. Penalties will vary between municipalities.
We are the voice of those vulnerable kids whose parents from time to time decide to act in a negligent manner. We're going to come in and ensure that we guarantee the safety of those children.
Rikhotso went on to say that parents should use their own discretion to guarantee the safety of their children. If a six year old child is not fully covered by a normal seatbelt; that particular child should be strapped into a car seat even though the law particularly speaks of children under three years of age.
Rikhotso says they are currently exploring the means to support those parents who cannot afford to purchase car seats. The car seats cost R800, he said.
As government we should continue to review our rules of the road, our regulations and ensure that our law enforcement officers who are deployed on our roads actually do execute them to the end. Secondly, we believe the most of the violations of the road traffic rules have to do with human error, people who deliberately conduct themselves in a certain manner without paying due attention to consequences of such behaviour:
- People who drive under the influence of drugs and alcohol.
- People who drive at high speed.
- People who just drive in a reckless and negligent manner.
To report irresponsible parents who drive with unstrapped toddlers call 0861 400 800