Verdict: If the child takes off their seat belts, there is a risk of a fine

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If the child takes off their seat belts, they face a fine

Verdict: If the child takes off their seat belts, there is a risk of a fine-there

When the child is buckled up before the journey, the driver’s duty of care does not end. Care should also be taken while driving that the child does not take off their seat belts while doing this

Source: picture alliance / RIA Novosti

Children are carefully buckled up before driving, but very few adults check whether the seat belt is still on while driving. But they should, otherwise there is a threat of a fine.

E.in car drivers must ensure that a child is properly buckled up during the entire journey. With this justification, the Higher Regional Court (OLG) Hamm confirmed in a decision a fine against a driver whose four-year-old daughter had unbuckled herself while driving. The court’s decision is final. (Ref. 5 RBs 153/13)

In the present case, the driver was traveling with his four-year-old daughter at the beginning of 2013. During a traffic control it was noticed that the girl was no longer buckled in her child seat on the back seat. The father sitting behind the wheel was then fined 40 euros – among other things for not properly securing the child.

The man defended himself on the grounds that his daughter had unbuckled herself for the first time during a trip. As a driver, he could not be required to constantly monitor the child’s safety while driving.

The driver has a special duty of care

The judges did not agree with this view. Rather, the driver has a special duty of care for passengers in need of protection, such as children. That is why he must ensure that they are properly secured and also check this during the entire journey.

In addition, a four-year-old child in a child seat had to make some effort to unbuckle himself, the OLG found. The father noticed this, had to stop the journey and buckle up the daughter again.

In individual cases, the driver even has to choose his route so that he can regularly look for the child on the road and stop immediately if necessary to secure the child again. In the opinion of the court, an accompanying person would also be a solution.

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