DOTr urged to suspend child car seat law
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Transportation (DOTr) should defer some provisions of the child car seat law since children under 15 years old are not allowed to go out during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Ako Bicol Rep. Alfredo Garbin Jr. suggested that the DOTr and the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases adopt a resolution to suspend some provisions of Republic Act No. 11229, or the Child Safety in Motor Vehicles Act. He noted that President Duterte reversed a move allowing children aged 10 and above to go out in areas under modified general community quarantine. The age range of people allowed to go out remains 15 to 65.
“There is no necessity now to bring children outside of the residence using any motor vehicle. The right time to implement is when the entire country is already in [modified] general community quarantine and when the age restrictions include children,” Garbin said on Monday.
He said since babies, children and teenagers below 15 years old are not yet allowed to go out, there is no need to implement some provisions of the law.
Garbin made the remarks as authorities begin to implement RA 11229, which will require the use of car seats for children 12 and below.
Under the law, children below 12 will not be allowed to occupy a vehicle’s front seat.
Children using regular seatbelts and parents carrying their children inside private vehicles will also no longer be allowed starting on Tuesday.
Garbin said the House of Representatives had yet to see the recommendation of the DOTr and the Land Transportation Office on how the law would be implemented in public utility vehicles.
“Very often we see small children as passengers on motorcycles and without helmets or any safety gear,” he said.
But parents such as Paulo Timajo described the law as “nonsense” since ordinary seatbelts already ensured the safety of their children.
“This is nonsense because we have always used seatbelts, and these are enough for my son … The government only implemented this law so those [car seat] companies can earn,” Timajo said. INQ
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