It doesn’t matter how much of a rush you’re in or how quickly you’ll be able to get back to your vehicle, it seems entirely wrong to leave young children alone inside a vehicle, whether the engine is running and the aircon is on, and pretty soon it will be illegal as well.

The House of Representatives has swiftly passed a bill on its third and final reading that will make it against the law to leave children eight years old and below unattended in motor vehicles.

Referred to as House Bill 6570, it stipulates that a child in or under the developmental age of eight must always be accompanied by a person 18 years or older in any of the following circumstances:

  • Conditions that present a significant risk to the child’s safety or health
  • The engine of the motor vehicle is running
  • The key of the motor vehicle is in the cabin of the motor vehicle

Penalty for the first offense is Php 5,000, second offense is Php 10,000 and Php 50,000 for the third offense plus confiscation of the driver’s license.

Subsequent violation will result in the revocation of the driver’s license.

The Land Transportation Office (LTO) will be tasked to conduct a nationwide awareness campaign in order to stress the dangers of leaving children alone inside motor vehicles.

Member agencies of the Council for the Welfare of Children and the LTO will be required to come up with the implementing rules and regulations should the bill be enacted into law.