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OFFICERS START ISSUING CITATIONS TUESDAY FOR CHILD SAFETY SEATS

Starting June 1, law enforcement officers may issue citations for violations of the recent changes to the State of Texas child passenger safety law passed in 2009. Officers could only issue verbal or written warnings for the first nine months,  a time period which will expire on June 1.

Fines are $25 to $250 plus court costs.

The law requires that all children younger than eight years old, unless they are already taller than 4-feet-9, to be in the appropriate child safety seat anywhere the child rides in a passenger vehicle. A passenger vehicle is defined as a passenger car designed to transport no more than 10 occupants including the driver, or a truck, light truck, truck tractor, sport utility vehicle or passenger van designed to carry no more than 15 occupants including the driver.

The law also requires that all safety and booster seats and safety vests be installed in accordance with the manufacturers instructions, including age, height and weight requirements. The seats must also have the proper placement in the vehicle. Some manufacturers prohibit the use of their products on the front seats of vehicles.

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