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The Law of travelling in the front of a car

10 replies

PJA · 30/04/2003 17:23

Ds is car mad and always asks to sit in the front passenger seat with his car seat. He loves to watch the road, the traffic and dh driving.
We always say No - and he sits in the back usually in a huff for a few minutes..
Does anyone know the law about this ?

I think ds has to be over 14 before he can go in the front.

Thanks.

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SoupDragon · 30/04/2003 17:33

"Children under three in the front of a car must be transported in an appropriate child seat. Children between three and 11 and under five foot tall, travelling in the back of cars must use an appropriate restraint if available (or otherwise use the adult seat belt). An unrestrained child must never be carried in the front seat of any vehicle."

"Never place a rear-facing seat near an active frontal airbag. Forward-facing restraints should be as far back from the airbag as possible. Always check the car handbook."

Thes are from this government website. It seems to say that, provided a child is propely restrained, they can sit in the front from whenever.

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PJA · 01/05/2003 09:55

So seems to say that ds (3) can travel in the front and is subject to the usual "must wear a seatbelt" law. In which case he can sit in the front on his booster chair.

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SoupDragon · 01/05/2003 10:04

That's how I've read it. I'm not 100% happy about our passenger air bag and very rarely let DS1 (4) sit in the front. When he does, the seat goes right back so it's touching the rear seat.

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PJA · 01/05/2003 14:30

We'll perhaps use the sitting the front of car as a treat to get him toilet trained. (Another thread - don't ask !)

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SueW · 01/05/2003 19:05

Whatever the law says, my car handbook (Golf) says children under 12 shouldn't go in the front seat (aurbag). I think it also says no-one under 5' tall.

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griffy · 01/05/2003 21:08

Airbags can be deactivated at a garage. It cost about £80 (might have been more), for my Golf.

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Claireandrich · 01/05/2003 21:15

It is still much much safer to put younger children in the back. My car guide book (Audi) also says that children under 12 should go in the back wherever possible.

Please be careful about deactivating an airbag. It may mean that your car's warranty is no longer valid - many dealerships won't deactivate them for this reason. Also, it can make your car harder to sell on - or at least lose you a substantial amount of money.

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GillW · 01/05/2003 21:32

Or could just buy a car where the passenger side airbag can be switched off - by you, and at zero cost!

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judetheobscure · 01/05/2003 21:42

not all airbags can be deactivated - mine can't

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SueW · 01/05/2003 23:42

But I don't want to de-activate my airbag! There's no need to.

Besides, it might put my insurance premiums up - all modifications from manufacturer's standard have to be advised to the insurer and since I only ever put adults in the front (I show kids the handbook and even my 11yo nephew takes it when it's in b&w) there's no reason.

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