Today I saw something horrifying. Unfortunately it’s not the first time I have seen something like this, and it won’t be the last. But today I did something about it.
What did I see?
I was on the way to collect the older 2 children from school. There was a bit of traffic upon approaching the traffic lights, where there are three lanes. One goes left, one straight on and one right. I got in the right hand lane. A car from the middle lane nipped in front of me. Nothing unusual there really.
I was sat at the lights, behind this car waiting for them to go green. That’s when I saw it. That’s when I saw something that horrified me.
In the car was a male driver and a female passenger. There was also a baby – no older than one year. The baby was on the lap of the passenger. Unrestrained. Wriggling around. I could clearly see her squirming around, trying to get out of the arms she was held in.
I always keep pen and paper in the car. I quickly grabbed it out of the door pocket and wrote down the colour, make, model and registration of the car in front.
The lights turned green. Then the male driver did something else that made my blood boil. He had clearly got in my lane to try and avoid the traffic queue for those going straight across. He cut up cars to shove his way in to the lane to go straight ahead, instead of turning right. All of this with an unrestrained baby in the front of the car!!
As soon as I got the the school I tweeted out asking for help. Can I report it? Who do I report it to?
I was advised to call the non-emergency 101 number and report it, which I did. I was advised as it had happened 20min before being reported, they may not be able to find the vehicle, but at least they were aware, had the details and hopefully the car would be flagged by the police.
I cannot fathom why any parent would not put their baby in a car seat. They are not that expensive. They are not voluntary. They are a necessity. They are a legal requirement. They will and do save lives.
Every year 2 million children face injury or death because parents have not fitted their car safety seat correctly, and according to experts, a collision of just 5mph can kill an unrestrained child in a car*.
So why do it? Why out your child in a position that is potentially harmful for them? And THEN to drive recklessly as well.
In some middle eastern countries it is normal to fill up your car and not use seat belts or car seats for children – but this is NOT a third world country.
The law is there to protect us. Protect our children. So for goodness sake – put your child in a correctly fitted car seat and PLEASE, if you see anyone driving with a baby or child not in car seat then report them. You could save that child’s life!
*statistics from ChildAlert.co.uk