Child Safety Motor Vehicle Act prohibits children below 12 years old on the front seat of vehicles

  • Many children who fail to comply with the Seatbelt Law are included in the alarming statistics of unsafe vehicle rides
  • The president has signed the Child Safety Motor Vehicle Act and concerned agencies shall strengthen its implementation starting this year

According to studies, more kids who ride a vehicle do not survive due to mishaps than kids who did not thrive on illnesses.

Image via Canva

In 2019, 128,000 adults were penalized for having a child seated on their lap which is a violation of the Seat Belt Law.

The law prohibits children 6 years old and younger to be seated on the laps of adults. That same year in February, President Rodrigo Duterte signed the Republic Act 11229 or the Child Safety in Motor Vehicle Act.

This gives a clearer definition of the implementing rules concerning child safety in vehicles. According to it, children 12 years old and below are not allowed to sit in the front seat of the vehicle. Children shorter than 4 feet and 11 inches should be seated in a child restraint system at the back seat of the car.

The World Health Organization said that the impact of a crash in vehicles is comparable to an adult falling off a four-story building. This could result in serious injuries to a child and that even an airbag si deemed not safe for them too.

In an interview by GMA News, Imagine Law Director Sophia San Luis stated, “Ang katawan ng bata, hindi pa ‘yan fully developed para maprotektahan ‘yung buto niya, ‘yung ulo niya, ‘yung brain niya.”

Image courtesy of Centers for Disease and Control Prevention

For public utility vehicles (PUVs), the Department of Transportation said it will examine the suitability of using child restraint systems. If not, they will look into regulations ideal for children’s safety in public transport.

Violators of the law will be fined P1,000 on the first offense, P2,000 on the second offense and P5,000 on the third plus suspension of driver’s license for a year. A corresponding penalty is given as well to drivers using a substandard or tampered child restraint system.