Safety aware­ness alert as school year be­gins

Matamata Chronicle - - News -

Plun­ket urges peo­ple to keep an eye out for chil­dren now that they are back at school.

As New Zealand’s largest provider of ser­vices to sup­port the health and de­vel­op­ment of chil­dren un­der five, Plun­ket recog­nises many chil­dren have ven­tured off to school for the first time.

Sue Camp­bell, Plun­ket’s Na­tional Child Safety Ad­viser says par­ents will of­ten have a lot to deal with get­ting chil­dren to school but also needed to re­mem­ber to keep them safe.

‘‘Re­mem­ber that no mat­ter how short the jour­ney, your child still needs to be re­strained in a car seat or booster seat. You can seek ex­pert as­sis­tance from a child re­straint tech­ni­cian who can ad­vise about the best car seat for your child’s age and weight and the one best suited to your car. Child re­straint tech­ni­cians are avail­able through Plun­ket car seat rental schemes and at a num­ber of other hire out­lets or re­tail­ers.

‘‘Not all car seats fit all ve­hi­cles so it is re­ally im­por­tant to try it in your ve­hi­cle be­fore you buy or hire it. Be sure to read the man­ual and fol­low the in­struc­tions for in­stalling it. The safest place for all car seats is in the back seat, so they are away from airbags in car dash­boards.

‘‘For par­ents and care­givers this can be an emo­tional and busy time but it’s also about re­mem­ber­ing to buckle chil­dren in ev­ery time they are rid­ing in the car,’’ Ms Camp­bell said.

‘‘Ev­ery­one needs to be more aware that more chil­dren are about, as well as peo­ple with prams and strollers and drive more cau­tiously.’’

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