Grays Harbor County is one of four counties in Washington State recently selected for a new pilot project focusing on child car seat violations. Started on February 27, extra grant-funded law enforcement patrols were on the lookout for unrestrained or improperly restrained children in vehicles. The law enforcement officers who are participating in the emphasis patrols have been through intensive child passenger safety training, some of whom are certified car seat technicians.
The Safety Restraint Coalition
Washington's Child Passenger Safety Program
The results are in from the first round;
Total number of contacts made with motorists - 310
Total number of citations - 174
Child Passenger Safety - Child Restraint infractions - 42
Child Passenger Safety - Child Restraint warnings - 31
Under 13 in Front Seat Infractions - 48
Under 13 in Front Seat warnings - 51
Other citations that may be of interest:
Speeding infractions - 30
Total Seatbelt infractions - 8
Suspended/revoked License - 18
Uninsured drivers - 31
Felony Warrant Arrests - 2
The Grays Harbor Traffic Safety Task Force received an $83,500 grant from the Washington Traffic Safety Commission to conduct a pilot project to publicize Washington’s child car seat law and fund additional law enforcement patrols of the law. To be in sync with the law and for the best protection for their children, parents should try to adhere to the following when buckling up their child:
- Child ages: 0 – at least 12 months and at least 20 pounds – use a rear-facing infant seat. Keep your child rear-facing as long as your child car seat allows.
- Age: 13 months to age four – use a child car seat with a five-point harness.
- Age: four to 4’9” tall – use a booster seat. Boosters should only be placed with a lap and shoulder belt.
- Age: up to age 13 – children must ride in the rear seat of the vehicle.
Participating in this first-ever effort to reduce child car seat violations and improve child passenger safety are the Grays Harbor County Sheriff’s Office, the Aberdeen, Montesano, Hoquiam Police Departments, and the Washington State Patrol.
The local pilot project was coordinated by The Grays Harbor County Traffic Safety Task Force. Similar projects will be running concurrently in the Spokane, Moses Lake, and Wenatchee areas. The $508,500 total project budget will cover patrols, training, public service announcements, signage, car seats, printing and research to measure the effectiveness of the project.
Parents needing more information about correctly installing their child car seat or about this project can call Susan Bradbury at 360.249.3711 x576 or visit www.800bucklup.org.