How should children travel on buses?

Perhaps on more than one occasion you have asked yourself how children should travel on buses, not only in urban or interurban buses, but also in long-distance buses. Given that there is no legal regulation that establishes how babies and small children should travel in coaches, here are some guidelines to respect.

In the case that we want to travel by bus with our little child through the different areas of our city or to a population that is within our autonomous community, most users know the rules perfectly. The parents are responsible for guarding the child to avoid any incident. There is also the possibility to cover the route while sitting with the child in his arms and in the opposite direction of the bus.

Travel on long distance buses

The current regulations are certainly ambiguous and incomplete, and this causes that many children travel daily in coaches or minibuses without complying at the minimum security conditions. As it is mandatory that all children under 12 years and with a height of less than 1.35 centimeters travel in the car with its corresponding child restraint system, it should also be on buses. However, in Spain we find that the General Circulation Regulation establishes how children over 3 years old should travel in this type of vehicle, but it does not fix how minors under that age should do it.

Children who are older than 3 years must use the seat belt of the bus or any other system that is approved. Since these types of seat belts usually have two anchoring points, there is no problem with the height of the child. In any case, this solution may not be enough, because if the bus brakes abruptly, the trunk and head will not be retained by this type of safety belts. If the bus has three-point belts, it is advisable to use an elevator so that the diagonal band does not cause damage to the child’s neck.

In the case of children under the age of 3 years, it would be advisable to travel with their child seat, but the main problem is that most of the coaches in Spain have seat belts with 2 anchor points instead of 3, which are necessary to fix an additional security accessory. A priori, the regulation does not include any point in which this solution is prevented, provided that the retention system is duly approved and correctly attached to the seat.

Parents should be aware that the children, although protected in their arms, will never be safe enough in case of sudden braking or an accident. Most likely, the little one is torn loose and suffers serious damage. First of all, it is important to check whether the child seat that we want to place on the bus can be fastened with the seat belt and also, contact the company to check whether our security system is compatible with the seat of the bus.

If there is a possibility, it is better to travel with companies that make child seats available for the youngest children.