We keep seeing every day on the road, children between 4-10 years sitting in cars, MPV’s and even small trucks with a booster seat and even worse, without a seatbelt. The Road Transport Ministry is taking this very seriously and plenty of reminders have been made to these parents, but they are still ignoring the dangers they are putting their children thru.
So why do they continue to ignore their children’s safety?
1. Lack of education
2. High faith in the ‘almighty’ that nothing will happen to them
3. Lack of money
4. Lack of common sense
5. Lack of reminders showing the dangers of not using a seat belt.
What should be done!
1. Time to post horrific images showing accidents like the images we see of cigarette smokers.
2. Enforcement needs to be stepped up.
3. Driving schools should start teaching this importance as one day the new drivers could be parents.
4. Schools and kindergartens should enforcing this with students.
‘Helicopter’ parents on the other hand do the best for their kids with expensive safety equipment and this is good.
Booster seats are designed for children who are too large for car seats and too small for adult seat belts. They are meant to prevent injuries by elevating children so their seat belts are properly positioned. Instead of crossing the soft tissue of the neck, for example, seat belts should cross the bony clavicle.
In Malaysia you can buy a child booster seat online from as low as RM47.00 to RM300.00 and this is worth every cent to prevent an unwanted incident with your child.
“Contrary to popular belief, the main purpose of a seat belt is not to keep people from being ejected out of a vehicle,” said Takuro Ishikawa, a doctoral candidate at the University of British Columbia. “It redirects crash forces to the strongest parts of the body, the hips and chest.”
And, like most things in your car, apart from maybe the back-seat entertainment system, seat belts are designed for grown-ups.
“Kids between 4 and 8 are too small and the seat belt usually ends up on their belly and across the neck,” said Ishikawa, whose research is probing the attitudes that keep parents from using booster seats. “That’s redirecting crash forces to the internal organs or to the neck.”
So if booster seats save lives, why are 50 per cent of children who should be in booster seats, riding in cars with just seat belts? Ishikawa thinks it’s because parents don’t understand the purpose of seat belts. His research is testing that. “Before I started studying this, I was absolutely sure that the point of seat belts was to prevent ejection,” he said. “I suspect more people may be like me, and if they are, then we can target that with education.”