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NSW RBT - Child not Properly Restrained in Car?

Discussion in 'Traffic Law Forum' started by packager, 7 January 2015.

  1. packager

    packager Member

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    Hi All,
    Was pulled over for usual RBT, that was all clear. Then the police officer noticed my nearly 4 year old one who sits right behind driving seat. Managed to get her hands out and she was not covered from shoulder strap in her child seat..

    The seat was properly fitted and also she was restrained/locked in the seat. but shoulder strap was not on. The officer fined me for not properly restraining the child over 6 months and below 4 years.

    When I refer to:
    http://www.rms.nsw.gov.au/cgi-bin/index.cgi?fuseaction=demeritpoints.browsehandler&category=Seat belts & restraints&offence=

    SEAT BELTS Drive with passenger under 6 mths not in fastened/adjusted/approved restraint

    SEAT BELTSDrive with passenger older than 6 mths but less than 4 yrs not restrained

    Am I correct in interpreting that I should not have been fined as it is quite clear she was restrained while in the car, but not properly fastened? Can I ask for leniency or take it to court? This was fist time I have ever been fined for seat belt/child restraint offence and feel I have been hard done by with double demerits and I had done the right thing when I started driving.
     
  2. Rod

    Rod Well-Known Member

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    Write to the police asking them to withdraw the fine and issue a warning instead if you have a good record. Works in Vic atm, not sure about NSW.

    Otherwise either pay the fine or go to court. Don't ignore it.

    Don't like your chances of getting off though at court. The NSW road rules say:

    "(2A) If the passenger is 6 months old or older, but is less than 4 years old, he or she must be restrained in a suitable and properly fastened and adjusted:(a) rearward facing approved child restraint, or(b) forward facing approved child restraint that has an inbuilt harness.Note 1 :
    "Approved child restraint"
    is defined in subrule (7) and
    "forward facing" and
    "rearward facing" are defined in subrule (6A)."

    The key words being properly fastened. If you don't mind taking the day off work you could attempt to argue your case to save ~$300 in a fine. Maybe she took her arms out while you were parked on the side of the road waiting for the police officer to come over.

    And police wonder why they are losing the respect of the public :(
     
    Tracy B likes this.
  3. Tim W

    Tim W Lawyer

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    My usual advice in such matters is:

    "Pay the fine, and go get on with your life."​
     
  4. Do I need a Lawyer

    Do I need a Lawyer Well-Known Member

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    Hi Packager,

    You may struggle to win the case if you take it to Court. However, if you have the time it may be worth going to Court on a plea of guilty but explain the circumstances. You may find a lenient Magistrate won't fine given the circumstances.

    Regards,

    Nick
     
  5. Wazir

    Wazir Member

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    Hi, Packager, did you get any luck in getting the fine waived off. The same thing happened to me last night. I was on my way to home with my wife and 3.5 years old daughter. I was stopped at the RBT and the cop noticed that my daughter has taken out her hands out of the seat belt in the child seat though she was restrained by the seat belt. My daughter was asleep at that time.

    The lady cop issued me with a $319 fine and three demerit points. This is the first time I've been fined for a child restraint. I think it's unfair and unjust. I'm thinking of asking for leniency. Would you please let me know what was the outcome of your fine. Anyone with any feedback and help would be much appreciated. Thanks
     

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