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Child car seat issues prompt free check service in Whanganui

Jun 02, 2023Jun 02, 2023

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A technician checks and adjusts a child car seat.

A recent check on the use of child car seats in Whanganui found 81 per cent needed to be adjusted.

Horizons Regional Council road safety co-ordinator Val Overweel said her team, police and car seat technicians carried out vehicle checks and helped adjust car seats.

“We know child car seats can be tricky sometimes,” Overweel said.

“Some are rear-facing, others front-facing. There are tether straps, seatbelt straps, some have chest clips, others don’t. It can be confusing.”

Issues found during the checks included expired car seats, missing anchor bolts and tether straps, and some car seat straps that were loose or twisted. Some children were in a seat unsuitable for their age, while a number of car seats were facing the wrong way or were loosely fitted.

“We helped some of these families, providing free anchor bolts, locking clips and tether extensions as well as a few replacement seats,” Overweel said.

“Unfortunately, some children were not restrained at all. Remember children under the age of 7 must be in an approved child restraint. If there is a booster in the vehicle and the child is 7 years old, they must be in that booster. Children are safer sitting in the rear of the vehicle and remaining in a booster until they are 148cm tall.”

To help families ensure their tamariki were safe in their car seats, the team of technicians from Little Buds will help correctly install car seats at an event next month, she said.

“We encourage you to take advantage of this free service, bring your little one down in their car seat and our car seat technicians can help fit these properly for you. The lovely team will be on hand to provide advice and help keep your tamariki safe.”

The event is at Horizons Regional Council, 181 Guyton St, on Saturday, September 2, between 9am and 1pm.

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