SNP President and Euro-MP Ian Hudghton is calling on the UK Government and Scottish Executive to better publicise new laws on child seats and child seat belts in cars which are due to come into force next Monday.

Mr Hudghton was speaking after surveys revealed up to two thirds of parents are unaware of the new rules which can lead to fines of up to £500. As from Monday EU rules incorporated into UK law mean that children under 12 years or less than 4ft 5in in height will have to be either strapped into an EU approved child's seat or use an approved booster seat.

Commenting, Mr Hudghton said:

"Whilst I welcome these measures to make car journeys safer for children, I think it's unfortunate that more hasn't been done to make parents aware of their importance and scope.

"The UK Government and Scottish Executive will have been aware that this was coming a long time ago and it's their responsibility to inform the public of the implications, yet it seems that the majority of parents are still not aware of the new rules. They could also consider measures to help less well-off parents purchase the required booster seats.

"In the long run these new rules should improve road safety, indeed some estimates say around 2,000 deaths and injuries a year could be avoided. What we now need to see is a high profile campaign to make parents aware of the new safety measures."

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