Children wearing approved restraints and adults' belts in crashes : TARU 1/81

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Children wearing approved restraints and adults' belts in crashes : TARU 1/81
Department of Motor Transport
Date published
This report is based upon an in-depth study (IMPACT 7) of 73 children who occupied cars in 231 crashes on New South Wales roads. The crashes were reported to involve children who were transported from the scene by ambulance. The study focused on restrained children under eight years of age. This was in view of legislation which provided legal impetus from March, 1977 in New South Wales for children to wear adult belts or child restraints of a type approved by the Standards Association of Australia if available when travelling in passenger vehicles. Children in approved child restraints were afforded very good crash protection in often severe crashes when their restraints were installed correctly and not loaded directly by other parts of their vehicles. One child died when her child seat was broken from behind by boot luggage and the dislocated car rear seat back. Three point emergency locking retractor and lap/sash seat belts also provided very good protection. One fatality however was reached by deep side vehicle intrusion, and another occurred when the loose sash strap of a lap/sash belt lay across the face of a child. Lap belts were ineffective for two fatalities because of a lack of control of excursion and possibility of ejection. There was little doubt that the five children would have died if unrestrained.
New South Wales
© State of New South Wales
This publication is released under a Creative Commons license CC BY 3.0 AU