Transport


Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Seat Belts/Restraints/Car Seats
  3. The Vehicle
  4. Managing Children in the Vehicle
  5. Mobility Allowance


1. Introduction

Children who are in your care should be treated as part of the family and you will be expected to transport them in the same way that you would your own children.

A first aid kit and fire extinguisher must always be carried in the vehicle.

Where outdoor activities are planned, first aid kits should be carried.

Under no circumstances should anybody smoke whilst children are in the car.


2. Seat Belts/Restraints/Car Seats

The law requires all children travelling in cars to use the correct child car seat or booster seat (see Using a child car seat or booster seat (GOV.UK)) until they are either 135 cm in height or the age of 12 (which ever they reach first). After this they must use an adult seat belt. The same rules apply for children with disabilities unless a doctor says they're exempt on medical grounds. They can use a disabled person's seat belt or child restraint designed for their needs.

When a child can travel without a car seat: the law taxis and minicabs etc. See When a child can travel without a car seat (GOV.UK).

It is the driver's legal responsibility to ensure that the child is correctly restrained.

Use the child seat for every journey, no matter how short. Make sure the seat’s harness (if it has one) is correctly adjusted so it is quite tight, so that only one or two fingers can fit between the child’s chest and the harness. The harness buckle should not rest over the child’s tummy.

Only EU-approved baby seats, child car seats or booster cushions can be used in the UK. These have a label showing a capital ‘E’ in a circle.

You can use your child’s car seat in the front seat of a vehicle, in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions / advice and, if it fits for example in a 2-seater car or convertible with the top down.

You must deactivate any frontal airbags before fitting a rear-facing baby seat.


3. The Vehicle

The vehicle should be roadworthy with an up to date MOT and insurance cover which includes fostered children.


4. Managing Children in the Vehicle

It is a good idea to take toys and books to occupy small children on long journeys.

If the vehicle has to be stopped at the side of the road or on the hard shoulder of a motorway, the hazard warning lights should be put on, all occupants should get out of the vehicle and stand well away from the road, and the emergency services must be called.

Your Safe Care policy should also include travelling in the car.

All vehicles that are used for transporting children must be smoke free. It is the legal responsibility of anyone who drives, manages or is responsible for order and safety on a vehicle, to prevent people from smoking. As from 1st October 2015 new rules apply about smoking in vehicles. For further information see Smoking in Vehicles and Guidance Rules about tobacco, e-cigarettes and smoking: 1 October 2015.


5. Mobility Allowance

You may be able to claim mobility allowance for Disabled Children, speak to the child’s social worker about this.