A four-vehicle accident on the North-South Expressway near the Seremban rest area yesterday has left a five-year-old dead and three others seriously injured, reported Bernama. According to Negeri Sembilan traffic staff officer ASP Mohd Hafidzal Zainal Abidin, the boy, identified as Muhammad Wafiq Fitri Walilah, died on the spot after being thrown out of the rear seat of a Honda BR-V.

Mohd Hafizal added that Muhammad Wafiq’s father Walilah Karim, mother Sri Yulianty Mukhtaruddin and two-year-old sister Puteri Wafiqah Walilah – who was sitting on her mother’s lap – were also seriously injured. “Initial investigations revealed that the accident occurred when a bus that was heading to Nilai from Seremban skidded and hit the rear of a Honda MPV which was moving slowly because of heavy traffic.

“A Toyota MPV which was earlier in front of the bus diverted into the left lane but was hit in the rear by a car on the left lane,” he said, adding that the occupants in the other vehicles were not injured, and that the bus driver has been detained for further investigations.

This unfortunate incident is yet another reminder for parents to keep their children secured properly in their vehicles. Under no condition should a child ever be left unsecured in a moving vehicle. In 2015, we reported on a similar accident that occurred in Florida, in which the rear end of a Hyundai Sonata was also almost completely obliterated in a three-car pileup.

Unlike the recent tragedy, however, the two children sitting at the rear – one aged 16 months, the other four years old – survived the collision with “what appear to be minor abrasions.” That’s because their mother secured both children using child safety seats, a move which undoubtedly saved their lives.

We cannot stress enough that while the use of child seats does not guarantee a child’s survival (particularly in serious accidents like this), it drastically reduced the forces acted upon the children in the incident in Florida – which in that instance was strong enough to break the 16-month-old’s child seat – than if they were left completely unsecured.

Kids who weigh under 25 kg (weight is a more accurate measure than age) must be placed in a child seat (Group 0+, 1 and 2), and those under 36 kg should be secured with seat belts, together with either a booster seat or booster cushion (Group 3). These are absolute necessities, not optional.


Please share for public information

Posted by Richardt Piek on Sunday, 14 December 2014

More than that, it’s absolutely vital that they be seated in the back, and not at the front. This is to position your kids away from the front airbags in case an accident happens. You should only ever place a child seat or booster seat in the front if your car has a front passenger airbag off switch (not many cars do) – and even then, only as a last resort.

And of course, you should never hold your child on your lap when sitting in front. Apart from the fact that your arms are not strong enough to restrain your child in the event of a collision, you would also be subjecting them to the full force of the airbag, potentially causing a broken neck and a fractured skull, as well as facial injuries on yourself – as the video above shows.

An airbag deploys extremely rapidly, using controlled explosives, inflicting considerable impact on the front passenger if he or she is not secured properly. This can be dangerous to adults who are unfastened, let alone small children, who can be flung backwards violently by an inflating airbag.

Parents, readers, please share this to avoid such horrific tragedies from happening again.