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Seatbelt campaign catches 798 violations

A three-week effort by Palo Alto police to crack down on seatbelt violations resulted in 798 citations being issued from May 15 through Sunday, June 4.

Police were “very surprised at so many violations,” Traffic Sgt. Steve Herrera said, since the three-week, state-funded effort was well-publicized in advance.

Most disturbing for the police were 23 citations issued to drivers for having unsecured child-safety seats. “With child-safety seats, buckle them,” Herrera said. “It’s your responsibility to save their lives.”

Fine for a first violation of the seat-belt law is $91, which doubles for second violations. Fines for having unsecured child-seats are $350.

During the campaign, police operated safety checkpoints for two hours at a time at various locations. That resulted in the 798 citations. Other seatbelt citations were issued by police during the same period as part of normal patrol activity, but the numbers for those haven’t been totaled yet, Herrera said.

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The enforcement campaign had an upside, too. A survey by police before the campaign found an 87 percent compliance with the seatbelt law, while a survey after the campaign found a 98 percent compliance rate.

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Seatbelt campaign catches 798 violations

Uploaded: Tue, Jun 6, 2006, 3:38 pm

A three-week effort by Palo Alto police to crack down on seatbelt violations resulted in 798 citations being issued from May 15 through Sunday, June 4.

Police were “very surprised at so many violations,” Traffic Sgt. Steve Herrera said, since the three-week, state-funded effort was well-publicized in advance.

Most disturbing for the police were 23 citations issued to drivers for having unsecured child-safety seats. “With child-safety seats, buckle them,” Herrera said. “It’s your responsibility to save their lives.”

Fine for a first violation of the seat-belt law is $91, which doubles for second violations. Fines for having unsecured child-seats are $350.

During the campaign, police operated safety checkpoints for two hours at a time at various locations. That resulted in the 798 citations. Other seatbelt citations were issued by police during the same period as part of normal patrol activity, but the numbers for those haven’t been totaled yet, Herrera said.

The enforcement campaign had an upside, too. A survey by police before the campaign found an 87 percent compliance with the seatbelt law, while a survey after the campaign found a 98 percent compliance rate.

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