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Flo Jo
Hi Guys... Hope you can help. It's my first time on the site, so here goes.

I was stopped by the police 3 days ago and issued with a fixed penalty notice. The punishment was £60 fine and an endorsement of 3 points. The charge written on the ticket is 'Carrying passengers in a dangerous manner' .

I was travelling with my 5 year-old son along a dual carriageway. My son was in a booster seat and utilising the inertia reel seat belt fitted as standard to most cars. He was positioned in the rear off-side behind me. This was unusual for him because he normally travels in the front but because I had given a lift to some family, he was pushed to the back. At the time I was stopped there was just me and my son in the car.

I had noticed him wriggling about and warned him to sit still. I proceeded along the dual carriageway and 50m ahead there was a service station. Once there I could safely move Joshua to the front passenger seat where he would be happy. I indicated and as I turned into the forecourt the police car turned on the blue lights. The officers approached and told me that my son had been standing up in the back. I opened the rear door and showed the officers that my son was sitting in a booster seat and the belt was plugged in and the lap belt secure. It was then I noticed that my son had removed the shoulder strap and put it behind his head. I assume what the officers had seen was my son pulling forwards in his booster seat. (The booster seat itself has no fixing to the car seat). The officer proceeded to give me the lecture on child safety and gave me little opportunity to offer mitigating circumstances before announcing his punishment.

It is my view that the punishment did not fit the crime. I believe that I had been responsible and taken all steps to ensure the safety of my child.
1. He was using an appropriate child seat
2. I had secured the seat belt around him properly but my son had removed it in transit.
3. I had warned him to sit down properly
4. I had stopped at the earliest and safest point to rectify matters.

I have refused to accept the fixed penalty notice and await a date for the hearing.

Can anyone offer any help on previous cases and or any other good advice?
Barneyrubble
First off how many officers were there? Secondly the child is sitting in his booster seat with the seat belt on so no offence has been committed. There are no seat belts fitted to cars that stop children from unfastening the belt so I cannot see why they have stopped you, A child is allowed to move in his seat the same as us adults are allowed to move about in our seats providing that we have our seat belts on. I think a look at the road traffic act to see what constitutes to carry passengers dangerously.
Looks like another jobsworth cuntstable
Barneyrubble
15 Restriction on carrying children not wearing seat belts in motor vehicles

(1) Except as provided by regulations, where a child under the age of fourteen years is in the front of a motor vehicle, a person must not without reasonable excuse drive the vehicle on a road unless the child is wearing a seat belt in conformity with regulations.

(2) It is an offence for a person to drive a motor vehicle in contravention of subsection (1) above.

(3) Except as provided by regulations, where a child under the age of fourteen years is in the rear of a motor vehicle and any seat belt is fitted in the rear of that vehicle, a person must not without reasonable excuse drive the vehicle on a road unless the child is wearing a seat belt in conformity with regulations.

(4) It is an offence for a person to drive a motor vehicle in contravention of subsection (3) above.

(5) Provision may be made by regulations—

(a) excepting from the prohibition in subsection (1) or (3) above children of any prescribed description, vehicles of a prescribed class or the driving of vehicles in such circumstances as may be prescribed,

(b) defining in relation to any class of vehicle what part of the vehicle is to be regarded as the front of the vehicle for the purposes of subsection (1) above or as the rear of the vehicle for the purposes of subsection (3) above,

© prescribing for the purposes of subsection (1) or (3) above the descriptions of seat belt to be worn by children of any prescribed description and the manner in which such seat belt is to be fixed and used.

(6) Regulations made for the purposes of subsection (3) above shall include an exemption for any child holding a valid certificate signed by a medical practitioner to the effect that it is inadvisable on medical grounds for him to wear a seat belt.

(7) If the driver of a motor vehicle is informed by a constable that he may be prosecuted for an offence under subsection (4) above, he is not in proceedings for that offence entitled to rely on an exception afforded to a child by a certificate referred to in subsection (6) above unless—

(a) it is produced to the constable at the time he is so informed, or

(b) it is produced—

(i) within seven days after the date on which he is so informed, or

(ii) as soon as is reasonably practicable,

at such police station as he may have specified to the constable, or

© where it is not produced at such police station, it is not reasonably practicable for it to be produced there before the day on which the proceedings are commenced.

(8) For the purposes of subsection (7) above, the laying of the information or, in Scotland, the service of the complaint on the accused shall be treated as the commencement of the proceedings.

(9) In this section—

*

“regulations” means regulations made by the Secretary of State under this section, and
*

“seat belt” includes any description of restraining device for a child and any reference to wearing a seat belt is to be construed accordingly.

(10) This section is affected by Schedule 5 to the [1988 c. 54.] Road Traffic (Consequential Provisions) Act 1988 (transitory modifications).
Flo Jo
Thanks for the legal stuff.. I shall take time and try and digest it. There were 2 officers . Both local PC's (not traffic bobbies). One was was a rookie and being tutored by the other. The rookie wrote the ticket on the say so of the other. Any idea if the rookie or both will appear in court?

From what I have gathered so far .. A straight forward seat belt offence where children are unrestrained carrys a £30 fine which is non-endorseable but as my son was wearing a belt I suppose he could n't do me for that.
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