SEASIDE — Oregon law enforcement agencies are teaming up across the state Feb. 9 through 22 to put extra police officers on the road to specifically look for traffic violations.
Patrol officers will be looking for seatbelt and child-restraint violations, using mobile devices (cellphones) without a hands-free device and speed violators.
In the 100-car surveys conducted in 2014, Seaside officers found 99 percent of drivers are buckling up. The goal remains to have 100 percent of all occupants buckling up.
Statewide, among those killed or injured were 938 child passengers under the age of 8, and a third of those were riding unrestrained or in the wrong type of safety restraint for their size. Child seats reduce the likelihood of infants under 1 being killed in a crash by 71 percent, and the fatal risk for toddlers age 1 to 4 by 54 percent, and 58 percent for infants and toddlers in SUVs, pickups and vans.
Oregon law requires children less than 40 pounds be restrained in a child seat. Children under the age of 1 or weighing less than 20 pounds must be restrained in a rear-facing child seat. A child over 40 pounds must be restrained in either a child seat or a booster seat appropriate for their size until they reach age 8 or are 4-feet, 9-inches tall and the adult restraint system fits them correctly.
A couple rules of thumb: is the restraint going across the child’s waist and not the abdominal area. In the event of a crash, you want the restraint to hold the child in their seat and not cut into their internal organs. Is the restraint going across the child’s shoulder and not on their neck. We look to see if the child is elevated in the booster to the level of being able to see out the side window to give us an idea they are in a proper booster for their size.