2007 California Vehicle Code Article 3.3. Child Safety Belt And Passenger Restraint Requirements

CA Codes (veh:27360-27368)

VEHICLE CODE
SECTION 27360-27368



27360.  (a) A parent or legal guardian, when present in a motor
vehicle, as defined in Section 27315, may not permit his or her child
or ward to be transported upon a highway in the motor vehicle
without properly securing the child or ward in a rear seat in a child
passenger restraint system meeting applicable federal motor vehicle
safety standards, unless the child or ward is one of the following:
   (1) Six years of age or older.
   (2) Sixty pounds or more.
   (b) (1) A driver may not transport on a highway a child in a motor
vehicle, as defined in Section 27315, without properly securing the
child in a rear seat in a child passenger restraint system meeting
applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards, unless the child
is one of the following:
   (A) Six years of age or older.
   (B) Sixty pounds or more.
   (2) This subdivision does not apply to a driver if the parent or
legal guardian of the child is also present in the vehicle and is not
the driver.
   (c) (1) For purposes of subdivisions (a) and (b), and except as
provided in paragraph (2), a child or ward under the age of six years
who weighs less than 60 pounds may ride in the front seat of a motor
vehicle, if properly secured in a child passenger restraint system
that meets applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards, under
any of the following circumstances:
   (A) There is no rear seat.
   (B) The rear seats are side-facing jump seats.
   (C) The rear seats are rear-facing seats.
   (D) The child passenger restraint system cannot be installed
properly in the rear seat.
   (E) All rear seats are already occupied by children under the age
of 12 years.
   (F) Medical reasons necessitate that the child or ward not ride in
the rear seat. The court may require satisfactory proof of the child'
s medical condition.
   (2) A child or ward may not ride in the front seat of a motor
vehicle with an active passenger airbag if the child or ward is one
of the following:
   (A) Under one year of age.
   (B) Less than 20 pounds.
   (C) Riding in a rear-facing child passenger restraint system.
   (d) (1) (A) A first offense under this section is punishable by a
fine of one hundred dollars (0), except that the court may reduce
or waive the fine if the defendant establishes to the satisfaction of
the court that he or she is economically disadvantaged, and the
court, instead, refers the defendant to a community education program
that includes, but is not limited to, education on the proper
installation and use of a child passenger restraint system for
children of all ages, and provides certification to the court of
completion of that program. Upon completion of the program, the
defendant shall provide proof of participation in the program. If an
education program on the proper installation and use of a child
passenger restraint system is not available within 50 miles of the
residence of the defendant, the requirement to participate in that
program shall be waived. If the fine is paid, waived, or reduced, the
court shall report the conviction to the department pursuant to
Section 1803.
   (B) The court may require a defendant described under this section
to attend an education program that includes demonstration of proper
installation and use of a child passenger restraint system and
provides certification to the court that the defendant has presented
for inspection a child passenger restraint system that meets
applicable federal safety standards.
   (2) (A) A second or subsequent offense under this section is
punishable by a fine of two hundred fifty dollars (0), no part of
which may be waived by the court, except that the court may reduce or
waive the fine if the defendant establishes to the satisfaction of
the court that he or she is economically disadvantaged, and the
court, instead, refers the defendant to a community education program
that includes, but is not limited to, education on the proper
installation and use of child passenger restraint systems for
children of all ages, and provides certification to the court of
completion of that program. Upon completion of the program, the
defendant shall provide proof of participation in the program. If an
education program on the proper installation and use of a child
passenger restraint system is not available within 50 miles of the
residence of the defendant, the requirement to participate in that
program shall be waived. If the fine is paid, waived, or reduced, the
court shall report the conviction to the department pursuant to
Section 1803.
   (B) The court may require a defendant described under this section
to attend an education program that includes demonstration of proper
installation and use of a child passenger restraint system and
provides certification to the court that the defendant has presented
for inspection a child passenger restraint system that meets
applicable federal safety standards.
   (e) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the fines
collected for a violation of this section shall be allocated as
follows:
   (1) (A) Sixty percent to health departments of local jurisdictions
where the violation occurred, to be used for a community education
program that includes, but is not limited to, demonstration of the
installation of a child passenger restraint system for children of
all ages and also assists an economically disadvantaged family in
obtaining a restraint system through a low-cost purchase or loan. The
county or city health department shall designate a coordinator to
facilitate the creation of a special account and to develop a
relationship with the court system to facilitate the transfer of
funds to the program. The county or city may contract for the
implementation of the program.  Prior to obtaining possession of a
child passenger restraint system pursuant to this section, a person
shall attend an education program that includes demonstration of
proper installation and use of a child passenger restraint system.
   (B) As the proceeds from fines become available, county or city
health departments shall prepare and maintain a listing of all child
passenger restraint low-cost purchase or loaner programs in their
counties, including a semiannual verification that all programs
listed are in existence. Each county or city shall forward the
listing to the Office of Traffic Safety in the Business,
Transportation and Housing Agency and the courts, birthing centers,
community child health and disability prevention programs, county
clinics, prenatal clinics, women, infants, and children programs, and
county hospitals in that county, who shall make the listing
available to the public. The Office of Traffic Safety shall maintain
a listing of all of the programs in the state.
   (2) Twenty-five percent to the county or city for the
administration of the program.
   (3) Fifteen percent to the city, to be deposited in its general
fund except that, if the violation occurred in an unincorporated
area, this amount shall be allocated to the county for purposes of
paragraph (1).


27360.5.  (a) No parent or legal guardian, when present in a motor
vehicle, as defined in Section 27315, may permit his or her child or
ward who is six years of age or older, but less than 16 years of age,
or who is less than six years of age and weighs 60 pounds or more to
be transported upon a highway in the motor vehicle without properly
securing the child or ward in an appropriate child passenger
restraint system or safety belt meeting applicable federal motor
vehicle safety standards.
   (b) No driver may transport on a highway any child who is six
years of age or older, but less than 16 years of age, or who is less
than six years of age and weighs 60 pounds or more in a motor
vehicle, as defined in Section 27315, without properly securing the
child in a child passenger restraint system or safety belt meeting
applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards.  This subdivision
does not apply to a driver if the parent or legal guardian of the
child is also present in the vehicle and is not the driver.
   (c) (1) A first offense under this section is punishable by a fine
of one hundred dollars (0), except that the court may reduce or
waive the fine if the defendant establishes to the satisfaction of
the court that he or she is economically disadvantaged, and the
court, instead, refers the defendant to a child restraint education
program that includes, but is not limited to, demonstration of the
proper installation and use of child passenger restraint systems for
children of all ages, and provides economically disadvantaged
families with a child passenger restraint low-cost purchase or loaner
program. Upon completion of the program, the defendant shall provide
proof of participation in the program that includes an inspection of
a child passenger restraint system that meets applicable federal
safety standards.  If an education program on the proper installation
and use of a child passenger restraint system is not available
within 50 miles of the residence of the defendant, the requirement to
participate in that program shall be waived.  If the fine is paid,
waived, or reduced, the court shall report the conviction to the
department pursuant to Section 1803.
   The court may, at its discretion, require any defendant described
under this section to attend an education program that includes
demonstration of proper installation and use of child passenger
restraint systems and provides certification to the court that the
defendant has presented for inspection a child passenger restraint
system that meets applicable federal safety standards.
   (2) A second or subsequent offense under this section is
punishable by a fine of two hundred fifty dollars (0), no part of
which may be waived by the court, except that the court may reduce or
waive the fine if the defendant establishes to the satisfaction of
the court that he or she is economically disadvantaged, and the
court, instead refers the defendant to a community education program
that includes, but is not limited to, education on the proper
installation and use of child passenger restraint systems for
children of all ages, and provides certification to the court of
completion of that program.  Upon completion of the program, the
defendant shall provide proof of participation in the program.  If an
education program on the proper installation and use of a child
passenger restraint system is not available within 50 miles of the
residence of the defendant, the requirement to participate in that
program shall be waived.  If the fine is paid, waived, or reduced,
the court shall report the conviction to the department pursuant to
Section 1803.
   The court may at its discretion, require any defendant described
under this section to attend an education program that includes
demonstration of proper installation and use of child passenger
restraint systems and provides certification to the court that the
defendant has presented for inspection a child passenger restraint
system that meets applicable federal safety standards.
   (d) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the fines
collected for a violation of this section shall be allocated as
follows:
   (1) Sixty percent to county or city health departments where the
violation occurred, to be used for an education program that
includes, but is not limited to, the demonstration of proper
installation and use of child passenger restraint systems for
children of all ages and provides child restraints for loan or
low-cost purchase.
   (2) Twenty-five percent to the county or city for the
administration of the program.
   (3) Fifteen percent to the city, to be deposited in its general
fund except that, if the violation occurred in an unincorporated
area, this amount shall be allocated to the county for purposes of
paragraph (1).



27361.  A law enforcement officer reasonably suspecting a violation
of Section 27360 or 27360.5, or both of those sections, may stop a
vehicle transporting a child appearing to the officer to be within
the age or weight specified in Section 27360 or 27360.5.  The officer
may issue a notice to appear for a violation of Section 27360 or
27360.5.



27362.  (a) A manufacturer, wholesaler, or retailer shall not sell,
offer for sale, or install in a motor vehicle, a child passenger
restraint system that does not conform to all applicable federal
motor vehicle safety standards on the date of manufacture.
Responsibility for compliance with this section shall rest with the
individual selling the system, offering the system for sale, or
installing the system. A person who violates this section is guilty
of a misdemeanor and shall be punished as follows:
   (1) Upon a first conviction, by a fine not exceeding four hundred
dollars (0), or by imprisonment in a county jail for a period of
not more than 90 days, or both.
   (2) Upon a second or subsequent conviction, by a fine not
exceeding one thousand dollars (,000), or by imprisonment in a
county jail for a period of not more than 180 days, or both.
   (b) The fines collected for a violation of this section shall be
allocated as follows:
   (1) (A) Sixty percent to the county or city health department
where the violation occurred, to be used for a child passenger
restraint low-cost purchase or loaner program which shall include,
but not be limited to, education on the proper installation and use
of a child passenger restraint system. The county health department
shall designate a coordinator to facilitate the creation of a special
account and to develop a relationship with the superior court to
facilitate the transfer of funds to the program. The county may
contract for the implementation of the program. Prior to obtaining
possession of a child passenger restraint system pursuant to this
section, a person shall receive information relating to the
importance of utilizing that system.
   (B) As the proceeds from fines become available, county health
departments shall prepare and maintain a listing of all child
passenger restraint low-cost purchase or loaner programs in their
counties, including a semiannual verification that all programs
listed are in existence. Each county shall forward the listing to the
Office of Traffic Safety in the Business, Transportation and Housing
Agency and the courts, birthing centers, community child health and
disability prevention programs, and county hospitals in that county,
who shall make the listing available to the public. The Office of
Traffic Safety shall maintain a listing of all of the programs in the
state.
   (2) Twenty-five percent to the county for the administration of
the program.
   (3) Fifteen percent to the city, to be deposited in its general
fund except that, if the violation occurred in an unincorporated
area, this amount shall be allocated to the county for purposes of
paragraph (1).


27362.1.  (a) No individual may sell or offer for sale a child
passenger restraint system that was in use by a child during an
accident involving a motor vehicle.
   (b) A violation of this section shall be punished by a fine of one
hundred dollars (0).



27363.  (a) The court may exempt from the requirements of this
article any class of child by age, weight, or size if it is
determined that the use of a child passenger restraint system would
be impractical by reason of physical unfitness, medical condition, or
size.  The court may require satisfactory proof of the child's
physical unfitness, medical condition, or size and that an
appropriate special needs child passenger restraint system is not
available.
   (b) In case of a life-threatening emergency, or when a child is
being transported in an authorized emergency vehicle, if there is no
child passenger restraint system available, a child may be
transported without the use of that system, but the child shall be
secured by a seatbelt.
   (c) A child weighing more than 40 pounds may be transported in the
backseat of a vehicle while wearing only a lap safety belt when the
backseat of the vehicle is not equipped with a combination lap and
shoulder safety belt.
   (d) This section shall become operative on January 1, 2002.




27363.5.  (a) Every public or private hospital, clinic, or birthing
center, shall, at the time of the discharge of a child provide and
discuss information on the current law requiring child passenger
restraint systems to the parents or the person to whom the child is
released when at least one of the following conditions is met:
   (1) The child is less than six years of age.
   (2) The child weighs less than 60 pounds.
   (b) A public or private hospital, clinic, or birthing center shall
not be responsible for the failure of the parent or person to whom
the child is released to use a child passenger restraint system.
   (c) This section shall become operative on January 1, 2002.



27364.  (a) It is the intent of the Legislature, in enacting this
article, to insure that children, who are, because of their tender
years, helpless dependent passengers, are provided with the safest
transportation possible.
   (b) It is the further intent of the Legislature to stress and
communicate to all drivers in this state the importance of using
child passenger restraint systems.
   (c) Nothing in this article shall be construed to extend
application of these provisions to a class of children other than the
class of children herein specified.



27365.  (a) (1) Every car rental agency in California shall inform
each of its customers of Section 27360 by posting, in a place
conspicuous to the public in each established place of business of
the agency, a notice not smaller than 15 by 20 inches which states
the following:  "CALIFORNIA LAW REQUIRES ALL CHILDREN UNDER 6 YEARS
OF AGE WHO WEIGH LESS THAN 60 POUNDS TO BE TRANSPORTED IN THE BACK
SEAT OF THE VEHICLE IN A CHILD RESTRAINT SYSTEM.  THIS AGENCY IS
REQUIRED TO PROVIDE FOR RENTAL A CHILD RESTRAINT SYSTEM IF YOU DO NOT
HAVE A CHILD RESTRAINT SYSTEM YOURSELF."
   (2) The posted notice specified in paragraph (1) is not required
if the car rental agency's place of business is located in a hotel
that has a business policy prohibiting the posting of signs or
notices in any area of the hotel.  In that case, a car rental agency
shall furnish a written notice to each customer that contains the
same information as required for the posted notice.
   (b) Every car rental agency in California shall have available
for, and shall, upon request, provide for rental to, adults traveling
with children under six years of age, child passenger restraint
systems that are certified by the manufacturer to meet applicable
federal motor vehicle safety standards for use by children weighing
60 pounds or less, are in good and safe condition, with no missing
original parts, and are not older than five years.
   (c) A violation of this section is an infraction punishable by a
fine of one hundred dollars (0).



27366.  (a) The department shall do the following:
   (1) Prepare and disseminate materials for the purpose of educating
the public about the importance of using passenger restraints for
infants and children under 15 years of age.  These materials shall
include, but are not limited to, audiovisual aids and written
materials that explain the effects of motor vehicle accidents on
infants and children and the reduction in risk of injury or death as
a result of the utilization of passenger restraints for infants and
children.
   (2) As funding is available, produce and administer a billboard
campaign stressing the importance of utilizing child passenger
restraint systems and instructing the public on where to obtain those
systems.
   (b) The department, the Office of Traffic Safety, and the State
Department of Health Services shall meet annually to coordinate,
share information about, and outline the programs that each
organization is pursuing in the area of child passenger restraint
systems.


27368.  This article applies to child passengers in a fully enclosed
three-wheeled motor vehicle that is not less than seven feet in
length and not less than four feet in width, and has an unladen
weight of 900 pounds or more.

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