THIS IS THE NEW SEAT BELT LAW IN CALIFORNIA.
TRUCKERS  NOW  HAVE TO BUCKLE UP!!!



 
 


An act to amend Sections 27315, 27360, and 27360.5 of the Vehicle Code, relating to vehicles.
LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST
AB 1278, Cardenas. Vehicles: safety belts.

(1) The Private Passenger Motor Vehicle Safety Act defines a "private passenger motor vehicle," for purposes of the act, as any passenger vehicle or any motortruck of less than 6,001 pounds unladen weight. Existing law makes it an infraction for any person to operate a private passenger motor vehicle on the highway without having that person and all passengers 16 years of age or over restrained by a safety belt. It is unlawful for any parent or legal guardian, when present in a private passenger motor vehicle to permit his or her child or ward who is between 4 years and 16 years of age to be transported on the highway in the vehicle without using a safety belt. It is also unlawful for any parent or legal guardian, when present in a private passenger motor vehicle to permit his or her child or ward who is less than 4 years of age to be transported on the highway in the vehicle without using a specified child passenger restraint system.

This bill , makes the crimes specified above applicable to persons in any passenger vehicle or any motortruck or truck tractor. By expanding the scope of the specified crimes, the bill  imposes a state-mandated local program.

(2) Existing law prohibits any person 16 years of age or over from being a passenger in a private passenger motor vehicle on a highway unless that person is properly restrained by a safety belt.

This bill  make that prohibition inapplicable to a passenger in a sleeper berth, as defined.

(3) The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.

This bill  provides that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.

SECTION 1. Section 27315 of the Vehicle Code is amended to read:

27315. (a) The Legislature finds that a mandatory seatbelt law will contribute to reducing highway deaths and injuries by encouraging greater usage of existing manual seatbelts, that automatic crash protection systems which require no action by vehicle occupants offer the best hope of reducing deaths and injuries, and that encouraging the use of manual safety belts is only a partial remedy for addressing this major cause of death and injury. The Legislature declares that the enactment of this section is intended to be compatible with support for federal safety standards requiring automatic crash protection systems and should not be used in any manner to rescind federal requirements for installation of automatic restraints in new cars.

(b) This section shall be known and may be cited as the Motor Vehicle Safety Act.

(c) As used in this section, "motor vehicle" means any passenger vehicle or any motortruck or truck tractor, but does not include a motorcycle.

(d) (1) No person shall operate a motor vehicle on a highway unless that person and all passengers 16 years of age or over are properly restrained by a safety belt. This paragraph does not apply to the operator of a taxicab, as defined in Section 27908, when the taxicab is driven on a city street. The safety belt requirement established by this paragraph is the minimum safety standard applicable to employees being transported in a motor vehicle. This paragraph does not preempt any more stringent or restrictive standards imposed by the Labor Code or any other state or federal regulation regarding the transportation of employees in a motor vehicle.

(2) The operator of a limousine for hire or the operator of an authorized emergency vehicle, as defined in subdivision (a) of Section 165, shall not operate the limousine for hire or authorized emergency vehicle unless the operator and any passengers four years of age or over and weighing 40 pounds or more, in the front seat are properly restrained by a safety belt.

(3) The operator of a taxicab shall not operate the taxicab unless any passengers four years of age or over and weighing 40 pounds or more, in the front seat are properly restrained by a safety belt.

(e) No person 16 years of age or over shall be a passenger in a motor vehicle on a highway unless that person is properly restrained by a safety belt. This subdivision does not apply to a passenger in a sleeper berth, as defined in subdivision (v) of Section 1201 of Title 13 of the California Code of Regulations.

(f) Every owner of a motor vehicle, including every owner or operator of a taxicab, as defined in Section 27908, or a limousine for hire, operated on a highway shall maintain safety belts in good working order for the use of occupants of the vehicle. The safety belts shall conform to motor vehicle safety standards established by the United States Department of Transportation. This subdivision does not, however, require installation or maintenance of safety belts where not required by the laws of the United States applicable to the vehicle at the time of its initial sale.

(g) This section does not apply to a passenger or operator with a physically disabling condition or medical condition which would prevent appropriate restraint in a safety belt, if the condition is duly certified by a licensed physician and surgeon or by a licensed chiropractor who shall state the nature of the condition, as well as the reason the restraint is inappropriate.

This section also does not apply to a public employee, when in an authorized emergency vehicle as defined in paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 165, or to any passenger in any seat behind the front seat of an authorized emergency vehicle as defined in paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 165 operated by the public employee, unless required by the agency employing the public employee.

(h) Notwithstanding subdivision (a) of Section 42001, any violation of subdivision (d), (e), or (f) is an infraction punishable by a fine, including all penalty assessments and court costs imposed on the convicted person, of not more than twenty dollars ($20) for a first offense, and a fine, including all penalty assessments and court costs imposed on the convicted person, of not more than fifty dollars ($50) for each subsequent offense. In lieu of the fine and any penalty assessment or court costs, the court, pursuant to Section 42005, may order that a person convicted of a first offense attend a school for traffic violators or a driving school in which the proper use of safety belts is demonstrated.

(i) For any violation of subdivision (d), (e), or (f), in addition to the fines provided for pursuant to subdivision (h) and the penalty assessments provided for pursuant to Section 1464 of the Penal Code, an additional penalty assessment of two dollars ($2) shall be levied for any first offense, and an additional penalty assessment of five dollars ($5) shall be levied for any subsequent offense.

All moneys collected pursuant to this subdivision shall be utilized in accordance with Section 1464 of the Penal Code.

(j) In any civil action, a violation of subdivision (d), (e), or (f) or information of a violation of subdivision (h) shall not establish negligence as a matter of law or negligence per se for comparative fault purposes, but negligence may be proven as a fact without regard to the violation.

(k) If the United States Secretary of Transportation fails to adopt safety standards for manual safety belt systems by September 1, 1989, no motor vehicle manufactured after that date for sale or sold in this state shall be registered unless it contains a manual safety belt system which meets the performance standards applicable to automatic crash protection devices adopted by the Secretary of Transportation pursuant to Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 208 (49 C.F.R. 571.208) as in effect on January 1, 1985.

(l) Each motor vehicle offered for original sale in this state which has been manufactured on or after September 1, 1989, shall comply with the automatic restraint requirements of Section S4.1.2.1 of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 208 (49 C.F.R. 571.208), as published in Volume 49 of the Federal Register, No. 138, page 29009. Any automobile manufacturer who sells or delivers a motor vehicle subject to the requirements of this subdivision, and fails to comply with this subdivision, shall be punished by a fine of not more than five hundred dollars ($500) for each sale or delivery of a noncomplying motor vehicle.

(m) Compliance with subdivision (k) or (l) by a manufacturer shall be made by self-certification in the same manner as self-certification is accomplished under federal law.

(n) This section does not apply to a person actually engaged in delivery of newspapers to customers along the person's route if the person is properly restrained by a safety belt prior to commencing and subsequent to completing delivery on the route.

(o) This section does not apply to a person actually engaged in collection and delivery activities as a rural delivery carrier for the United States Postal Service if the person is properly restrained by a safety belt prior to stopping at the first box and subsequent to stopping at the last box on the route.

(p) Subdivisions (d), (e), (f), (g), and (h) shall become inoperative immediately upon the date that the United States Secretary of Transportation, or his or her delegate, determines to rescind the portion of the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 208 (49 C.F.R. 571.208) which requires the installation of automatic restraints in new motor vehicles, except that those subdivisions shall not become inoperative if the secretary's decision to rescind that Standard No. 208 is not based, in any respect, on the enactment or continued operation of those subdivisions.

SEC. 2. Section 27360 of the Vehicle Code is amended to read:

27360. (a) No parent or legal guardian, when present in a motor vehicle, as defined in Section 27315, shall permit his or her child or ward under the age of four years, regardless of weight, or weighing less than 40 pounds, regardless of age, to be transported upon a highway in the motor vehicle without providing and properly using, for each child or ward, a child passenger restraint system meeting applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards.

(b) No driver shall transport on a highway any child under four years of age, regardless of weight, or weighing less than 40 pounds, regardless of age, in a motor vehicle, as defined in Section 27315, without providing and properly securing the child in a child passenger restraint system 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 ($100), except that the court may 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 passenger restraint low-cost purchase or loaner program. If the fine is waived, the court shall nevertheless report the conviction to the department pursuant to Section 1803.

(2) A second or subsequent offense under this section is punishable by a fine of one hundred dollars ($100), no part of which may be waived by the court.

(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 health departments 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 municipal court system 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.

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, 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 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).

SEC. 3. Section 27360.5 of the Vehicle Code is amended to read:

27360.5. (a) No parent or legal guardian, when present in a motor vehicle, as defined in Section 27315, shall permit his or her child or ward who is four years of age or older but less than 16 years of age and weighs 40 pounds or more to be transported upon a highway in the motor vehicle without providing and properly using, for each child or ward, a safety belt meeting applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards.

(b) No driver shall transport on a highway any child who is four years of age or older but less than 16 years of age and weighs 40 pounds or more in a motor vehicle, as defined in Section 27315, without providing and properly using a 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 fifty dollars ($50).

(2) A second or subsequent offense under this section is punishable by a fine of one hundred dollars ($100).

SEC. 4. No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIIIB of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIIIB of the California Constitution.

Notwithstanding Section 17580 of the Government Code, unless otherwise specified, the provisions of this act shall become operative on the same date that the act takes effect pursuant to the California Constitution.


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