The California Highway Patrol (CHP) is renewing its efforts to ensure children are safely secured while traveling California’s roadways. The CHP has partnered with the California Office of Traffic Safety to implement the California Restraint Safety Education and Training (CARSEAT) III campaign.
The CARSEAT III campaign will run for one year and focus on reducing the number of unrestrained and improperly restrained children killed in traffic collisions throughout California. To accomplish this goal, the CHP will host educational seminars, classes, and child safety seat inspections. These efforts will highlight the importance of child passenger restraint and seat belt usage, and provide education related to the proper installation of child passenger safety seats.
California law requires a child be properly restrained in an appropriate child safety seat in the rear seat of a vehicle until they are at least eight years of age. Children age eight and older, who are at least four feet nine inches, may ride in the rear seat of a vehicle in a properly fitted seat belt. Children under the age of two must ride in a rear-facing child safety seat until they reach 40 pounds or 40 inches in height. For the best protection, all children should ride rear-facing as long as possible, until they reach the upper weight and height limits of their car seat.
“Making sure everyone in your vehicle is buckled up in an appropriate car seat for their age and size is the easiest way to prevent serious injury or even death in the event of a crash,” said CHP Commissioner Warren Stanley.
The commissioner also encourages drivers to set an example by buckling up for every trip, no matter how short.
“The goal of this campaign is to educate parents and caregivers to ensure all children and adults in California are using car seats and seat belts for every trip,” said Stanley.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, child passenger safety seats reduce the risk of fatal injury by 71 percent for infants and by 54 percent for toddlers in passenger cars.
In addition to educational efforts, the CHP will be conducting enforcement operations concentrating on occupant restraint violations throughout the year with a special emphasis during the national “Click It or Ticket” campaign in May and national Child Passenger Safety Week in September.
For more information regarding seat belt regulations, child passenger safety, child safety seats – including free inspections and installations by appointment – contact your local CHP Area office.
Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.