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House OKs bill prohibiting leaving kids unattended in motor vehicles

The House of Representatives has approved on third and final reading the bill seeking to prohibit leaving children aged eight years and below unattended in motor vehicles.

Voting 209 in the affirmative and zero in the negative, the chamber approved House Bill 6570, which provides that no children below the developmental age of eight years old will be left inside a motor vehicle without a person aged 18 years or older supervising them.

This, while the conditions present a significant risk to the child's health or safety, the engine of the motor vehicle is running, or even when the key to the motor vehicle is anywhere inside the motor compartment of the vehicle.

If enacted into law, violators will be slapped with a penalty of P5,000 for the first offense, P10,000 for the second offense, and P50,000 with confiscation of the driver’s license for the third offense.

Subsequent offenses would cost the driver's license of the violator revoked.

The measure mandates the Land Transportation Office (LTO) to hold a nationwide public awareness campaign tackling the prohibition and dangers of leaving children inside motor vehicles without adult supervision.

At the same time, the LTO, in consultation with member-agencies of the Council for the Welfare of Children, is mandated to issue the implementing rules and regulations of the measure once it becomes law. —KG, GMA News