The rule for leaving children unattended in any situation falls under the Children, Youth and Families Act (2005). The adult in charge needs to ensure reasonable supervision and care of a child, taking into account the circumstances of the situation.
The penalties for leaving a child unattended in a car in Victoria include a fine (currently $4030), or a maximum of six months’ imprisonment, or both.
To avoid the situation described above, the best advice is to do the petrol run when there aren’t children in the car.
Elvira Lazar, RACV manager, safety and education
For more details on the Victorian Road Rules, go to racv.com.au/roadrules
Submit Road Rules questions to RoyalAuto, Level 9, 485 Bourke Street, Melbourne, VIC 3000 or firstname.lastname@example.org, including 'Road Rules Question’ in the subject line.