x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Mothers spurning child safety seats

Hospital staff have called for a "change in mentality" after a survey suggested that fewer than half of new mothers had fitted child safety seats in their vehicles.

DUBAI // Hospital staff have called for a "change in mentality" after a survey suggested that fewer than half of new mothers had fitted child safety seats in their vehicles. A quarter of 400 mothers who filled in the questionnaire, circulated by Al Wasl Hospital, said their child was never restrained when travelling by car. Almost 60 per cent said they believed the risk of being involved in a car accident was low, and many believed that holding their baby tight could prevent serious injury if an accident were to happen.

Hamid Hussein, the hospital's senior specialist in general and public medicine, said the survey betrayed a "mentality that has to change". Ministry of Health figures show that road accidents are the number one cause of childhood death. Last month Dr Taiseer Atrak, chairman of paediatrics at Abu Dhabi's Mafraq Hospital, estimated the number of children who died in accidents in the emirate could be double that of countries such as the US and the UK.