§ Mr. Peter Bottomley
We will review whether head restraints should be a compulsory fitment in the light of current discussions on improvements in the present EC standard for restraints.
It is important to secure these improvements first, because we are bound to permit restraints approved to EC or UN ECE standards.
The main improvement we are seeking is to increase the height requirement of restraints. This would apply the benefits to a greater number of occupants. Under the present standard the benefits apply mainly only to shorter people.
Singificant progress was made in June when our proposal to increase the height requirement was well supported by other European Governments. In the meantime I would urge manufacturers to provide restraints meeting our proposed new height requirement as soon as possible in order to maximise the benefits to road safety.