In efforts to keep young passengers safer, New Jersey will enact a new law beginning September 1st, 2015. It is hard to imagine that any parent would have a problem with this law when the main goal is to protect children in motor vehicles. Crashes and accidents are not always avoidable, no matter how careful of a driver you are. Knowing that your child is safety secured in the event of an accident is unquestionably soothing. The added safety precautions and the requirements of this new legislation for age, weight, and height provide parents with a duty to insure the safety of their children.
This law will invoke stringent regulations for necessary safety seating for children who are passengers in all vehicles. The following are the new guidelines:
- Any child under two years of age weighing less than thirty pounds must be in a five-point harness, rear-facing child seat in the back seat of the vehicle
- Any child under four years of age weighing less than forty pounds must be in a five-point-harness child seat, either rear-facing or forward-facing in the back seat of the vehicle
- Any child under eight years of age and less than fifty-seven inches tall must be in a secured five-point harness forward-facing child seat or a booster seat in the back seat of the vehicle
- Children over the age of eight or more than fifty-seven inches tall are to be secured by a regular car seat belt in the back seat of the vehicle
These new regulations are not without exceptions, however. For cars with no back seat, the above must be followed for the front seat, but only if the airbag system can be disabled or turned off. If there is no way for the airbag to be turned off or disabled on the passenger side, the child is not to ride in that vehicle. If deployed, the airbag can pose a serious danger to a young child. School buses will also be exempt from this regulation.
Previous regulations came with a violation fine between $10 and $25, but with this new law the fine will increase to $50—$75.
Traffic violations may seem minor, but they can result in some serious consequences. Failing to obey laws can result in devastating consequences, especially if there is an accident. Something as little as looking down for an instant to check for a text can cause a severe crash. And you never know—one of the passengers in the other car is likely to include a child in a safety seat.
For any questions you might have about traffic laws and regulations, or if you are facing more serious charges as a result of a traffic violation, call attorney Mark A. Schneider. As a former municipal prosecutor, he has extensive knowledge in traffic court hearings and uses his experience to help you with your case. Call today for a free consultation at (609) 242-9337.