Children who get out of their car seat
Seventy four per cent of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder get out of their vehicle restraint
Buckle release challenges
Dealing with buckle release and associated issues is a daily challenge for many families like Bronwyn's.
Planning for children who get out of their restraints
Children getting out of their vehicle restraint whilst the vehicle is moving is a significant road safety risk for the child, driver, passengers and other road users. It is also distressing for the child and family.
Children may take their arms out of the car seat built-in harness or vehicle seatbelt, unbuckle the car seat or seatbelt, or slide under the seatbelt. In some cases children are then able to get out into the road environment. Sadly, this has resulted in serious injury or death for some children and carers.
Some children who unbuckle their vehicle restraint also demonstrate aggressive, self-injurious, or disruptive behaviour during car travel. This may cause distraction and interfere with the driver, increasing crash risk.
Our research has identified there is often a need for immediate intervention for the child and family to reduce risks.
There are a range of strategies and vehicle restraint options to support safe and comfortable travel for the child and family. We are currently working on case studies to share examples of how health professionals in Australia have addressed their clients’ needs in this area.