Rampai Puteri Medical Centre (RPMC) launched its Buckle Up, Baby! campaign yesterday in collaboration with the Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (MIROS), aimed at curbing child fatalities in road accidents. The hospital is providing free child car seats for every newborn delivered in November.

The seat being given out is the Sweet Cherry Fiji, a Group 0+ child seat with a weight limit of 10 kg. Those who purchase the Suite delivery package will get the Avora Gemini instead, a Group 0+, 1 and 2 seat with a 25 kg limit. Both seats are secured using the car’s seat belt.

After November, the Sweet Cherry Fiji will be offered on a free rental basis (with a deposit of RM150) for those who do not have a child seat during a delivery. The Avora Gemini, meanwhile, will be sold to the public at a discounted price of RM350, down from the retail price of RM499.

Additionally, RPMC is also implementing a hospital-wide policy requiring every newborn baby to be secured in a child seat upon being discharged. The hospital is collaborating with MIROS as a co-organiser – the latter will assist in the campaign’s implementation and to provide expertise on how to install a child seat properly.

According to statistics from the police, children make up one of the largest groups of people killed in road accidents in Malaysia, with around 600 children below the age of one being killed on the road every year. Studies have shown that child car seats are most effective at protecting children in the event of a collision – the risk of death is reduced by 71% with the use of correctly-installed seats.