Three sessions were rolled-out in Gippsland throughout November as part of the Starting Out Safely program that empowers families and early childhood educators to work together to help children become safe and independent road users.

Regional Roads Victoria’s Acting Eastern Regional Director, Pas Monacella said road trauma is the leading cause of death and disabling injury for children in Australia, with several thousand being hospitalised in Australia every year due to transport related injuries.

“These sessions are all about arming local professionals with crucial information about transporting children safely and correctly fitting child car seats,” Mr Monacella said.

“We know that car seats are effective when it comes to protecting children in a crash and this can be compromised if the seat is not fitted correctly. Programs like Starting Out Safely are instrumental in getting critical road safety messages out to the community.”

Zora Marko, Project Manager of the Starting Out Safely program from Early Learning Association of Australia (ELAA) said these sessions are part of a wider program that also provides invaluable resources to the wider community to help them make the best road safety decisions for youngsters in their care.

“There are so many laws and options regarding car seats for children and it can be overwhelming and confusing for parents and caregivers,” Ms Marko said.

“I urge anyone who transports children to jump online and look at the car seat and road safety resources available as part of Starting Out Safely. We have information sheets and videos that everyone in our community can learn from.”

The Starting Out Safely program has been in place since 2011 and is funded by VicRoads and delivered by ELAA.

Find more information about Starting Out Safely, child car seats and child road safety.