Traffic collisions are the leading cause of death of children in the country. Sadly, more than half of the children who die in collisions are not properly restrained in child safety seats or are unrestrained altogether. Many of these children would be alive today if they had been properly restrained in seatbelts or child safety seats. Studies have shown that child safety seats are 71 percent effective in saving the lives of children involved in vehicle collisions. Additionally, parents need to be reminded to use a booster seat for their children. Generally, children who have outgrown child safety seats with built-in harnesses are still too small to benefit from the protection of an adult seatbelt. Booster seats allow children to sit up comfortably in the passenger seat while providing the proper restraint of a standard seatbelt. Children should never be placed in a safety seat in the front of a vehicle. All children age 12 and under should be properly restrained in the back seat.
Choosing and Using Car Safety Seats
- Infants (Birth to 12 Months): Choose an infant safety seat or convertible seat. The baby must face back of car. Ensure strap slots are at or below shoulder level and the baby’s head does not fall forward. Harnesses should be adjusted snugly before adding blankets. The baby’s head should be placed at least 1" below top edge of seat. All seats need to be placed in the back seat
Children under the age of 8 must be secured in a car seat or booster seat in the back seat.
Children who are 8 years of age OR have reached 4’9” in height must be secured by a safety belt.
Passengers who are 16 years of age and over are subject to California's Mandatory Seat Belt law.
- California Law (Effective 01/01/2017):
- Children under 2 years of age shall ride in a rear-facing car seat unless the child weighs 40 or more pounds OR is 40 or more inches tall. The child shall be secured in a manner that complies with the height and weight limits specified by the manufacturer of the car seat.
Child Car Seat Inspections
Child safety is of high importance to everyone. Recent studies show that over 90% of child car seats are incorrectly installed. It is the goal of the Elk Grove Police Department to keep every child safe and has certified car seat technicians to ensure that it is installed in the safest way possible.
In the Sacramento County area, car seat classes and checks can be found HERE.
Officer & Community Responsibilities
It is the responsibility of every uniformed officer to enforce violations of the California Vehicle Code, educate citizens on the importance of traffic safety and make every effort to protect drivers on City streets. These efforts, combined with the participation and cooperation of community will help ensure the safety of motorists throughout the City.