Under new legislation, seat belts must now be provided on dedicated school transport in Scotland.
The Seat Belts on School Transport (Scotland) Act 2017, which will come into force on 01 August 2018, requires every child to have access to a seat belt when travelling to and from school.
National guidance and awareness-raising materials have been published online and sent to school authorities and other interested parties with information on seat belt fitting, wearing and monitoring.
Schools and local authorities will use the guidance as an opportunity to look at what approaches have worked for encouraging pupils to wear seat belts. A recent YoungScot survey highlighted peer pressure was one of the reasons they were not worn on school transport.
Kenneth Gibson MSP said:
“The SNP Government is committed to achieving safer road travel, which is why we’re urging pupils to wear a seat belt and making sure that they are available to all.
“Safety at school should begin with safe transport and I am sure that families will feel reassured that their child is guaranteed access to a seat belt when returning to school after the summer holidays.”
Transport Minister Humza Yousaf MSP commented:
“While the Act won’t affect the law on the wearing of seat belts, which - astonishingly - is reserved to Westminster, the SNP Government has always been clear that the Act represents an opportunity to promote seat belt wearing and wider awareness of safety.”