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Mandatory Seat Belts for Children traveling by Plane?

 Photo courtesy istockphoto and the Globe and Mail

Canada's Transportation Safety Board (TSB) wants airlines to implement specially designed seat belts for infants and small children, to be mandatory for all commercial air travel.  The idea is to prevent them from becoming "projectiles" and to increase their chance of living through otherwise survivable crashes and bad turbulence.


The TSB's position is that a parent's arms are not strong enough to restrain a child in severe turbulence or a plane crash, with tragic examples serving as documentation.  We spend a lot of money and effort to keep children safe while traveling in cars, but none while they're flying, an obvious contradiction.


This is likely not to be well received by parents of small children, who currently can hold children under 2 years of age on their laps without buying a separate seat for them.  These new restraints would require each child to occupy its own seat, an unwelcome expense.


These recommendations will receive expedited review by Transport Canada before they are implemented.   I think the recommendations are reasonable.  Children are too precious not to receive our best protection and it's obvious that the current "under 2 on lap" policy is done for the financial convenience of the parents, without the child's safety interest receiving much consideration.  Will that make flying more expensive for families?  Yes, but better to fly less  often in my opinion and provide a safe experience for children.


More on this story from the Globe and Mail at this link.



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  • Photo courtesy istockphoto and the Globe and Mail

Twitter: @DrFumblefinger

"We do not take a trip, a trip takes us".  John Steinbeck, from Travels with Charlie

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