The Good Egg Car Safety Blog

Law exception - Short journeys

"It is OK for your child to not use a car seat on short journeys" - FACT or MYTH?


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MYTH!

 

This is perhaps one of the most commonly misunderstood exceptions to the law, and the one most often misused.

 

What does The Law say?


The law states that a child over the age of 3 may travel without a child restraint, on short journeys of unexpected necessity.  The child must use the adult seat belt.

 

What is unexpected necessity?

 

    • An essential trip that you had no prior notice of.

 

    • When the child may be at risk, if they do not travel.

 

    • Emergency, unplanned trips to A&E/Doctors/Out of Hours Surgeries where no car seat is available.

 

What sort of journeys are not acceptable uses of this exception?

 

    • Catching a lift with a friend/relative to save walking.

 

    • A pre-planned appointment.

 

    • Trips that could be reasonably pre-planned (like a school run, or looking after friends/relatives children).

 

    • Long distances.

 

    • Children under 3 years of age.

 

Has this law exception for short journeys ever confused you?


Read our blog on the other car seat law exceptions.


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