CALIFORNIA VEHICLE RESTRAINT LAWS - A REFRESHER
INFANTS AND SMALL CHILDREN
V.C. 27360(a) Cite parent/guardian for each child who is not properly restrained in the rear seat unless the child is six years or older or weighs 60 pounds or more.
V.C. 27360(b) Cite driver only if parent is not present.
- Court sanctioned exemption, medical condition, physical unfitness, or size.
- Life threatening emergency or transported in authorized emergency vehicle.
- Child over 40 pounds in rear seat of vehicle with lap belts only.
Each child is required to be properly restrained in the back seat unless child is six years or older or weighs 60 pounds or more.
Exceptions: V.C. 27360(c) 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 (CPRS) that meets applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards, under the following circumstances:
- There is no rear seat.
- The rear seats are side-facing jump seats.
- The rear seats are rear-facing seats.
- The Child Passenger Restraint System cannot be installed properly in the rear seat.
- All rear seats are already occupied by children under the age of 12 years.
- 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.
A child may NOT ride in the front seat with an active passenger airbag if:
- Under one year of age.
- Weighs less than 20 pounds.
- Riding in a rear-facing Child Passenger Restraint System.
V.C. 27360.5(a) Cite parent/guardian for each child who is unrestrained and is 6 years of age but less than 16, or is less than 6 years and weighs 60 pounds or more.
V.C. 27360.5(b) Same as above but cite driver only if parent is not present.
V.C. 27315(d) Cite driver for self and all passengers 16 or older not properly secured in a safety belt.
V.C. 27315(e) Cite each passenger 16 or older not properly secured in safety belt.
V.C. 27315(f) Cite registered owner if safety belts have been removed or not working.
PICKUP LAW: V.C. 23116 Cite driver (a) and/or persons (b) riding unrestrained in or on the back of pickup truck or flatbed.
UNATTENDED CHILD IN A MOTOR VEHICLE: V.C. 15620(a) A person responsible for a child age 6 or under may not leave the child inside a vehicle without a person who is at least 12 years of age if there are conditions that present a significant risk to child’s health or safety or engine is running and/or keys are in the ignition.
You may report unrestrained children in a motor vehicle to the California Highway Patrol by calling 1-800-TELLCHP.