Advice on child restraints for children living with a disability or a medical condition
Children living with a disability or medical condition often require special consideration when being transported in motor vehicles.
Under the law
South Australian law requires all restraints to comply with the Australian/New Zealand Standard 1754: Child Restraint Systems for use in motor vehicles. However, when an approved restraint is not suitable, then a modified restraint or specialised seat may need to be considered and a medical exemption sought.
Our experts provide advice and recommendations
RAA provides support to parents, carers and physiotherapists to ensure children living with a disability are secured as safely as possible while complying with the relevant SA legislation.
We have a range of restraints, including some of the latest extended harness seats, which can be trialled to ensure their suitability. We also have samples of selected accessories.
Our recommendations are made in line with the Australian/New Zealand Standard 4370: Restraint of children with disabilities or medical conditions, and the relevant legislative requirements.
We’ll then document the final recommendations (Advice to Parents Form), which will also provide any special instructions for use, advice on medical exemptions where applicable, and a review date. This documentation will also provide assistance when applying for funding (e.g. NDIS).
We help assess a range of options when selecting the right seat for your child
When assessing a child with special needs, we consider the following options as outlined in the AS/NZ Standard 4370:
- Standards approved seat (wherever possible as this is the legal requirement)
- Standards approved seat with modifications (or modifications in its use)
- Specialised non-approved seat
- Specialised non-approved seat with modifications
- Or a customised restraint as a last resort
If Option 1 isn’t suitable then a medical exemption is needed. This exemption requires a medical certificate signed by a medical practitioner to be carried when the child is in the car being restrained as described, and all conditions of the certificate must be complied with.
The medical certificate needs to show:
- the details of the child’s condition
- a statement confirming they can't be adequately restrained in a standards approved restraint
- a date for review
Where an approved restraint won’t meet the needs of the child then a special purpose or custom-made restraint will be considered. As these are not approved to the Australian Standard, they’re always considered a last option. If a non-approved restraint is needed, it’s recommended to only use those that have been crash-tested by VicRoads and Transport for NSW.
Make a booking
One-hour appointments for this service are available on Monday and Tuesday afternoons.
To make an appointment to have your child’s needs assessed, call RAA’s Safety Centre on 8202 4592. If you’re unable to transport your child to the centre, it may be possible to arrange a home visit.
Parents and physiotherapists will be provided with an Advice to Parents form that will detail the recommendations, any special instructions and a recommended review date.
Our experts are here to help
Our team of experts are here to offer you independent advice on everything, from legal requirements to when your child is ready for an adult seatbelt.
Recommended child restraints
To provide the best protection for your child, it’s important to choose the right restraint to suit their size.
Members benefit from discounts on child restraints and accessories.
Book a child restraint fitting
A correctly fitted restraint is critical in keeping your child safe when travelling in your vehicle. That’s why RAA offers free child restraint fittings and checks for members.
Non-members can have a seat fitted for $30 or checked for $15.
We're here to help
Call usMonday to Wednesday and Friday, 9am to 5pm
Thursday, 9am to 7pm
Saturday, 9am to 12pm
Enquire onlineWant to book a fitting or just after some advice? Send us a message and we'll contact you
Visit RAA's Safety CentreDrop in at your convenience – we're at 101 Richmond Road, Mile End
Help centreFind answers to frequently asked questions, download helpful fact sheets, or locate a regional fitting centre