Car safety

It is illegal for children, including babies, to be seated in a car without a properly fitted child seat that is suitable for their weight and height for every journey; there are no exceptions.

For more information, be sure to familiarise yourself with the Scottish Good Egg Guide to In-car Child Safety.

Travelling with babies

  • Before you buy a car seat, make sure it is the correct one for your child and that it will fit into your car.
  • Never sit a baby on your lap, in your arms or put a seatbelt around yourself and a baby on a car journey. In a crash, or even a small bump, the weight of both people will be transferred and severely injure the child.
  • Rear-facing car seats should be used until your baby is able to sit up for long periods without any help.
  • Infant car seats can be used in the front or back seat in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions; however, if there is an airbag on the passenger side in the front of the vehicle, your baby can be severely injured and must travel in the back if the airbag is activated.
  • Don’t use a second-hand car seat unless you’re absolutely sure it isn’t damaged – faults can be invisible to the eye.
  • Some hospitals hire car seats and some taxis supply them. Always ask a taxi firm for this service if you ever need to use a taxi and don’t have your own seat. Everyone in the vehicle must use a seatbelt or child seat at all times.
  • Learn how to use the car seat – including fitting it – before using it with your baby.

You don’t want to have to worry about car safety when you’re trying to care for your baby, too!

Choose a shop or retailer with trained staff who will make sure you get the right seat, show you how to fit it properly, and then guide you as you fit it yourself.

Last Updated: 24 November 2015
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