V C Section 27375 Charter Party Carriers: Emergency Exits

Charter Party Carriers: Emergency Exits

27375.  (a) Any person who operates a limousine, as defined in subdivision (i) of Section 5371.4 of the Public Utilities Code, in any city, county, or city and county, that has been modified or extended for purposes of increasing vehicle length in an amount sufficient to accommodate additional passengers shall ensure that the vehicle has at least two rear side doors and one or two rear windows, as specified in paragraph (1), that the rear seat passengers or all passengers of the vehicle may open from the inside of the vehicle in case of any fire or other emergency that may require the immediate exit of the passengers of the vehicle. A limousine subject to this section shall be equipped with both of the following:

(1) (A) Except as provided in subparagraph (B), at least two rear push-out windows that are accessible to all passengers. At least one push–out window shall be located on each side of the vehicle, unless the design of the limousine precludes the installation of a push–out window on one side of the vehicle, in which case the second push–out window shall instead be located in the roof of the vehicle.

(B) If the design of the limousine precludes the installation of even one push–out window on a side of the vehicle, one push–out window shall instead be located in the roof of the vehicle.

(C) The Department of the California Highway Patrol shall establish, by regulation, standards to ensure that window exits are operable and sufficient in emergency situations for limousine passengers. The department shall ensure that these regulations comply with any applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards.

(2) At least two rear side doors that are accessible to all passengers and that may be opened manually by any passenger. At least one rear side door shall be located on each side of the vehicle. For vehicles modified or extended for purposes of increasing vehicle length in an amount sufficient to accommodate additional passengers on or after July 1, 2015, at least one of these side doors shall be located near the driver's compartment and another near the back of the vehicle. These side doors shall comply with any applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards as deemed necessary by the Department of the California Highway Patrol.

(b) In the case of any fire or other emergency that requires the immediate exit of the passengers from the limousine, the driver of the limousine shall unlock the doors so that the rear side doors can be opened by the passengers from the inside of the vehicle.

(c) An owner or operator of a limousine shall do all of the following:

(1) Instruct all passengers on the safety features of the vehicle prior to the beginning of any trip, including, but not limited to, instructions for lowering the partition between the driver and passenger compartments and for communicating with the driver by the use of an intercom or other onboard or wireless device.

(2) Disclose to the contracting party and the passengers whether the limousine meets the safety requirements described in this section.

(3) If paragraph (3) of subdivision (d) applies, the owner or operator of a limousine shall further disclose to the contracting party and the passengers that the limousine does not meet the safety requirements required in subdivision (a) regarding vehicle escape options because of its exempt status, and therefore may pose a greater risk to passengers should emergency escape be necessary.

(d) (1) Subdivision (a) shall apply to all limousines modified or extended for purposes of increasing vehicle length in an amount sufficient to accommodate additional passengers on or after July 1, 2015.

(2) Subdivision (a) shall, beginning January 1, 2016, apply to all limousines that were modified or extended for purposes of increasing vehicle length in an amount sufficient to accommodate additional passengers prior to July 1, 2015.

(3) Except as provided in paragraph (4), subdivision (a) shall not apply to any limousine manufactured prior to 1970 and that has an active transportation charterparty carrier (TCP) number as of August 15, 2013.

(4) Subdivision (a) shall apply to any limousine manufactured prior to 1970 if it is modified or extended for the purpose of increasing vehicle length in an amount sufficient to accommodate additional passengers after August 15, 2013.

Added Sec. 2, Ch. 752, Stats. 2013. Effective January 1, 2014.