Richmond police launch seat belt enforcement campaign

Richmond Progressive Alliance-led council votes to defund RPD by $3M
File photo of Richmond Police Department headquarters.

Starting today through Nov. 29, the Richmond Police Department will step up its enforcement of drivers and passengers not wearing their seat belts.

RPD is among law enforcement agencies throughout the country taking part in the annual Click it or Ticket campaign.

RPD “will have additional officers on patrol looking for drivers and passengers who are not wearing a seat belt,” police said. “This includes drivers who do not properly secure children in child safety seats.”

The fine for a seat belt violation is $162.

“California law requires a child be properly secured in a safety seat in the second row of a vehicle, when available, until they are at least 8 years of age,” according to RPD. “Children under the age of 2 must ride rear-facing or until they reach 40 pounds or 40 inches in height.”

Despite a 96-percent rate of seat belt use in California last year, there has been a noted decline in seat belt use by backseat passengers, according to police.

“A recent report by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) found only 76% of rear seat passengers wore seat belts,” RPD stated.

Nationally, seat belts saved nearly 15,000 lives of people ages five and older in 2017, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Funding for the enforcement program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.