The child restraint and booster seat requirements has been the most wildly debated topic among private-hire drivers recently. There were even instances where passengers got violent when private-hire drivers declined to pick up passengers with infant or child below 1.35m.
What does the Singapore Regulations say ?
According to the Road Traffic Act (Chapter 276), Road Traffic (Motor Vehicles, Wearing of Seat Belts) Rules 2011, Passenger below 1.35 metres in height to be properly secured by approved child restraint, etc.
8.—(1) Where a person below 1.35 metres in height is a passenger of a motor vehicle to which these Rules apply, no person shall use the motor vehicle unless the passenger is properly secured by —
- (a) an approved child restraint appropriate for a person of that height and weight; or
- (b) a body-restraining seat belt in the manner set out in rule 4(2) when seated on a booster seat cushion or when using a seat with an adjustable seat belt approved by the Registrar.
(2) This rule shall not apply in relation to —
- (a) any taxi, if the person below 1.35 metres in height is a rear seat passenger of the taxi; or
- (b) anybus, other than a small bus that is used for the conveyance of any child to or from his school.
Unlike Taxis, private-hire cars do not pick-up riders on the road and thus is not given the same exemption as Taxis.
What is the Penalty
Offenders will face a fine of $120 and 3 demerit points if caught.
If charged in court, any person who contravenes rule4(1)or(2),5,8(1)or 9 shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $1,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 3 months and, in the case of a second or subsequent offence, to a fine not exceeding $2,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months.