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Child car seats approved under the new standard will offer enhanced safety features, including a new sizing system (i-Size), to ensure that children are using the correct car seat.

The new legislation, which implements a new EU safety standard for child car seats, has been approved by the Assembly and will become operational from 20 April 2015.By 2018, it is expected that the new arrangements will be standard across all vehicles.

The new i-Size system offers better protection for a child in the event of a side impact collision. It allows the seat to be secured to anchorage points in the car structure with a simple push and click movement. This addresses the uncertainty many feel when securing a child car seat using a seatbelt intended for an adult. The new i-Size standard will eventually replace the current child car seat standard.

Minister Durkan said: “These new safety standards are welcome. They will provide parents with further assurance for the safety of children as they travel as passengers in cars on Northern Ireland roads. Ultimately however, all of us using the road must take personal responsibility for our attitudes and behaviours on the roads. We must wear a seatbelt on every journey and ensure that our children use a suitable car seat.”

Between 2008 and 2012, two children under the age of five were killed and 21 seriously injured while travelling as car passengers on Northern Ireland roads.

Further information on the new i-Size standard can be found on the NIDirect websiteexternal link

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