Shocking Photo Of Baby Barely Secured In 'Dangerous' Car Seat Sparks Warning
NSW Police have released a "very dangerous" photo of a seven-month-old baby who was found loosely strapped into a car seat in a precarious position.
Officers made the discovery when they stopped an unregistered Holden Commodore station wagon for a random breath test on the Sturt Highway about 3:30pm on Sunday.
The male driver, 27, had an international licence. A female passenger, 24, was seated in the back next to the baby, who was in a forward-facing car seat.
The NSW Traffic and Highway Patrol Command posted the photo on Facebook on Monday, saying the seat was in a very poor condition and "not secured or anchored in any way".
"The anchor strap of the car seat was tied across the top of the car seat across the child’s chest passing underneath his neck," the post said.
"The child did not have any seat belt adjusted or fastened and was in a very dangerous position for a child that age."
Under national child restraint laws, children up to the age of six months must be secured in an approved rearward-facing restraint.
Those aged between six months and four years should be seated in a rear or forward-facing approved restraint with an in-built harness.
Police obtained a suitable car seat, and took the child and his mother to the nearest town "due to serious safety concerns".
They issued the driver with an infringement notice for driving with an unrestrained child and using an unregistered vehicle.
Children who are properly secured are less likely to be injured or killed in a car crash.
But new research has found the majority of parents are unaware they should also be complying with height restrictions.
The Royal Children's Hospital National Child Health Poll found only three percent of parents know their child should be 145 centimetres tall to travel without a booster seat, regardless of their age.
The poll surveyed 1600 Australian families, and found 63 percent of children between seven to 10 years old travel without a booster, even though most of them are too short.
"More than two-thirds of children are coming out of booster seats before it's safe for them to do so,” paediatrician at the Melbourne Royal Children's Hospital Andrea Rhodes said.
"The vast majority of Australian parents are unaware of some of the safest practise recommendations when it comes to kids in cars."
The Traffic and Highway Patrol Command urged parents to contact an Authorised Restraint Fitting Station to ensure the correct and safe installation of their child car seat.
Featured image: Facebook / NSW Police Force (Traffic and Highway Patrol Command)