MANY drivers would leave a sleeping baby in the car while they paid for petrol – but is it legal?
Here is what the law and the experts say about leaving your child alone in a car.
Is it illegal to leave a child in a car?
It is illegal to leave a child alone if doing so places them at risk.
The law does not give an explicit age when a child would not be considered at risk, instead leaving the decision to parents.
Gov.uk advises parents to use their judgement to determine if their kid is mature enough to be left alone in a car.
But parents could face prosecution if they leave youngsters unsupervised in a situation likely to cause unnecessary suffering or injury to health.
Examples of that could be near a cliff edge or deep water.
What do the experts say about leaving your kids alone in the car?
The NSPCC advises that kids under 12 are rarely mature enough to be left alone for a long period of time.
It says that babies, toddlers and very young children should never be left alone.
Chris Cloke, of the NSPCC, told the Hull Daily Mail: "When left alone in a vehicle, young children can very quickly start to get anxious and distressed.
"Even if they're sleeping peacefully when you leave they could well wake up and get very upset when you're not there to look after them.
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"They would not be able to protect themselves in an emergency and may even try to leave the vehicle to find you.
"As children become older parents need to exercise their own judgement. if they can see the car the whole time it may be sensible depending on your child's maturity.
"Every child is different and every parent knows their child's readiness to be left in this scenario."
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