Driving with Children – Part 1

This article is published in association with Ministry of Interior in public interest.

One needs to realize that driving with children can be tricky and needs a few practical precautions to be taken, especially if a child is riding alone with the driver. This week in Bahrain This Week’s Rethink column, we touch upon the topic of safe driving with children.

To begin with, a child under 10 years of age must never be allowed to sit in the front seat. Toddlers and children up to five or six years of age must be securely fastened in the car seat installed on the rear seats. This is because, in case of a collision, the airbags and the seat belts can cause grave damage to the delicate little bodies of children.

Children above seven and up to ten years of age must sit in the back seat and wear the seat belt. This is all the more essential since they can sometimes be unruly or distracting, endangering safety by taking the driver’s attention away from the road. And we all know what just a couple of seconds’ distraction can result in.

Children above 10 can be allowed to sit in the front, but must wear the seat belt at all times, even for a short ride. In all cases, remember to activate child locks on all doors. If the weather calls for opening the window panes, the back seat window panes and the pane of the seat next to the driver must be kept only half open so that children in the vehicle have no opportunity to lean outside, thereby putting their limbs or lives in danger.