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SB-20 Vehicles: buses: seatbelts.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 03/21/2017 04:00 AM
SB20:v97#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  March 20, 2017
Amended  IN  Senate  February 15, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 20


Introduced by Senator Hill
(Coauthor: Senator Stone)
(Coauthor: Assembly Member Eduardo Garcia)

December 05, 2016


An act to amend Section 34505.8 of, and to add Section Sections 27318 and 27318.5 to, the Vehicle Code, relating to vehicles.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 20, as amended, Hill. Vehicles: buses: seatbelts.
Existing law prohibits a person from operating a motor vehicle on a highway unless that person and all passengers 16 years of age or over are properly restrained by a safety belt. Existing law makes the violation of this provision an infraction.
This bill would also require a passenger in a bus that is equipped with safety belts to be properly restrained by a safety belt. belt and would require a bus operator to maintain those safety belts in good working order for the use of the passengers. The bill would also require a bus operator to inform passengers of the requirement to wear a seatbelt and would authorize a bus driver to post, or allow to be posted, signs or placards informing passengers of the requirement to wear a seatbelt, as specified. The bill would make a violation of this provision an infraction punishable by a fine of not more than $20 for a first offense and a fine of not more than $50 for each subsequent offense. By creating a new crime, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program. The bill would specify that it does not apply to schoolbuses.
This bill, if the bus is equipped with a driver safety belt, would require the driver to be properly restrained by the safety belt and would require the bus operator to maintain the driver safety belt. The bill would make violation of these provisions an infraction punishable by a fine of up to $20 for the first violation and of up to $50 for subsequent violations. By creating a new crime, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
Existing law requires a charter-party carrier of passengers engaged in charter bus transportation to ensure that drivers of certain vehicles provide each passenger with written or video instructions that include, among other things, the importance of wearing a seatbelt, if available. A violation of this provision is an infraction.
This bill would instead require those written or video instructions to include, among other things, instructions on the requirement to wear a seatbelt, if available, and the penalties for violating that requirement. By changing the definition of a crime, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 27318 is added to the Vehicle Code, to read:

27318.
 (a) (1) A passenger in a bus that is equipped with safety belts, including a bus that is required to be equipped with a seatbelt assembly pursuant to Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 208 (49 C.F.R. 571.208), shall be properly restrained by a safety belt.
(2) If the bus is equipped with safety belts, the bus operator shall maintain safety belts in good working order for the use of passengers of the vehicle.
(b) (1) Before the departure of a bus carrying passengers in a bus equipped with safety belts, the bus operator shall inform passengers of the requirement to wear the seatbelt under California law and shall inform passengers about the penalties for the violation of the requirement to wear a seatbelt pursuant to this section.
(2) In addition to the information pursuant to paragraph (1), a bus operator may also post, or allow to be posted, signs or placards that inform passengers of the requirement to wear a seatbelt under California law and the penalties for a violation of the requirement to wear a seatbelt pursuant to this section. The signs or placards shall be in a font type and font size that is reasonably easy to read and shall be affixed to a bus in multiple, conspicuous locations.
(c) Notwithstanding subdivision (a) of Section 42001, a violation of subdivision (a) is an infraction punishable by a fine of not more than twenty dollars ($20) for a first offense, and a fine of not more than fifty dollars ($50) for each subsequent offense.
(d) This section does not apply to a schoolbus described in Sections 27316 and 27316.5.

SEC. 2.

 Section 27318.5 is added to the Vehicle Code, to read:

27318.5.
 (a) (1) If a bus is equipped with a driver safety belt, the driver of the bus shall be properly restrained by the safety belt.
(2) If a bus is equipped with a driver safety belt, the bus operator shall maintain the safety belt in good working order for the use of the driver.
(b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a) of Section 42001, a violation of this section is an infraction punishable by a fine of not more than twenty dollars ($20) for a first offense and a fine of not more than fifty dollars ($50) for each subsequent offense.
(c) The requirements of this section are intended to satisfy the requirements of Section 392.16 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations, or any similar federal law or regulation, but shall remain in effect in the absence of those laws.

SEC. 2.SEC. 3.

 Section 34505.8 of the Vehicle Code is amended to read:

34505.8.
 (a) A charter-party carrier of passengers engaged in charter bus transportation shall ensure that the driver of a vehicle as described in paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 5363 of the Public Utilities Code that is designed to carry 39 or more passengers shall instruct or play a video for all passengers on the safety equipment and emergency exits on the vehicle prior to the beginning of any trip and provide each passenger with written or video instructions that include, at a minimum, a demonstration of the location and operation of all exits, including emergency exits, the requirement to wear a seatbelt, if available, and the penalties for a violation of the requirement to wear a seatbelt.
(b) Notwithstanding any other law, no later than July 1, 2018, the department shall adopt standards and criteria for the implementation of the safety requirements specified in this section.
(c) This section does not alter or affect the requirements of the Passenger Charter-party Carriers’ Act (Chapter 8 (commencing with Section 5351) of Division 2 of the Public Utilities Code).

SEC. 3.SEC. 4.

 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.