V C Section 27315.3 Safety Belts Law Enforcement Vehicles

Safety Belts: Law Enforcement Vehicles

27315.3.  (a) As used in this section, "passenger motor vehicle" means a passenger vehicle as defined in Section 465 and a motortruck as defined in Section 410 of less than 6,001 pounds unladen weight, but does not include a motorcycle as defined in Section 400.

(b) Every sheriff’s department and city police department and the Department of the California Highway Patrol shall maintain safety belts in good working order for the use of occupants of a vehicle that it operates on a highway for the purpose of patrol. 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.

(c) Notwithstanding subdivision (a) of Section 42001, a violation of subdivision (b) is an infraction punishable by a fine, including all penalty assessments and court costs imposed on the convicted department, 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 department, of not more than fifty dollars ($50) for each subsequent offense.

(d) (1) For a violation of subdivision (b), in addition to the fines provided for pursuant to subdivision (c) 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 a first offense, and an additional penalty assessment of five dollars ($5) shall be levied for any subsequent offense.

(2) All money collected pursuant to this subdivision shall be utilized in accordance with Section 1464 of the Penal Code.

(e) In a civil action, a violation of subdivision (b) or information of a violation of subdivision (c) 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.

(f) Subdivisions (b) and (c) shall become inoperative immediately upon the date that the Secretary of the United States Department 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) that requires the installation of automatic restraints in new passenger motor vehicles, except that those subdivisions shall not become inoperative if the secretary’s decision to rescind Standard No. 208 is not based, in any respect, on the enactment or continued operation of those subdivisions or subdivisions (d) to (h), inclusive, of Section 27315.

Amended Sec. 2, Ch. 474, Stats. 2011. Effective January 1, 2012.