Introduction of Child Restraint Regulations
Statement by Department of Transport on the National Road Traffic Regulations, 2000 (Gazette Number 38142)
On 31 October 2014, the Department of Transport published the National Road Traffic Regulations, 2000 under the government gazette 38142 for commencement. The gazette contained various legislative amendments under the National Road Traffic Act, 1996 (Act No.93 of 1996).
One of the significant amendments contained in this gazette is the amendment to regulation 213 which provides for the compulsory usage of child restraint seats.
Regulation 215 was amended by the insertion of Sub-regulation 6(A) which provides as follows:
“The driver of a motor vehicle operated on a public road shall ensure that an infant travelling in such a motor vehicle is seated on an appropriate child restraint. This provision shall not apply in the case of a minibus, midibus or bus operating for reward.”
This amended regulation comes into effect on 1 May 2015.
Scope of Application
This regulation will apply to all the drivers of a motor vehicle operated on a public road in which an infant is a passenger. The regulation requires such a driver to ensure that the infant is seated on an appropriate child restraint.
An infant is a person below the age of three years.
This regulation however does not apply in the case of a minibus, midibus or bus operating for reward.
The child restraint should comply strictly with the Standard Specification SABS1340 “Child restraining devices in motor vehicles” and it shall bear a certification mark or approval mark as authorised by the South African Bureau of Standards.
Drivers of motor vehicles referred to herein are warned that this regulation is compulsory and should therefore be strictly complied with.
Failure to comply with the National Road Traffic Act provisions will result in the person being liable for a fine. It is important that in order to avoid any fines as stated above, all drivers of motor vehicles with infant passengers should ensure that their motor vehicles are fitted with child restraint seats at all times and that infants are seated on child restraints as required by law.
This communication is aimed at raising awareness and informing members of the public about the new law.
Together, let us save the lives of our children on the roads. Let us all obey the rules of the road.