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§ 22-412.2. Child safety seat and seat belt requirements for children

West's Annotated Code of MarylandTransportationEffective: October 1, 2013

West's Annotated Code of Maryland
Transportation
Title 22. Vehicle Laws--Equipment of Vehicles (Refs & Annos)
Subtitle 4. Other Equipment (Refs & Annos)
Effective: October 1, 2013
MD Code, Transportation, § 22-412.2
§ 22-412.2. Child safety seat and seat belt requirements for children
Definitions
(a)(1) In this section the following words have the meanings indicated.
(2)(i) “Child safety seat” means a device, including a child booster seat, that the manufacturer:
1. Certifies is manufactured in accordance with applicable federal safety standards; and
2. Intends to be used to restrain, seat, or position a child who is transported in a motor vehicle.
(ii) “Child safety seat” does not mean a seat belt or combination seat belt-shoulder harness used alone.
(3)(i) “Seat belt” means a restraining device described under § 22-412 of this subtitle.
(ii) “Seat belt” includes a combination seat belt-shoulder harness.
Child safety seat meeting requirements of section
(b) A child safety seat meets the requirements of this section only if it is installed and used in accordance with the directions of the manufacturer.
Application of section
(c) This section applies to the transportation of a child in:
(1) A motor vehicle registered, or of a type capable of being registered, in this State as a:
(i) Class A (passenger) vehicle;
(ii) Class E (truck) vehicle; or
(iii) Class M (multipurpose) vehicle; and
(2) A vehicle registered in another state or Puerto Rico that is the same type of vehicle as a vehicle identified in item (1) of this subsection.
Children required to be secured in child safety seat
(d) A person transporting a child under the age of 8 years in a motor vehicle shall secure the child in a child safety seat in accordance with the child safety seat and vehicle manufacturers' instructions unless the child is 4 feet, 9 inches tall or taller.
Children under the age of 16 years required to use child safety seat or seat belt
(e) Subject to subsection (d) of this section, a person may not transport a child under the age of 16 years unless the child is secured in:
(1) A child safety seat in accordance with the child safety seat and vehicle manufacturers' instructions; or
(2) A seat belt.
Certification for exception to child safety seat or seat belt requirements for medical reasons
(f) Notwithstanding subsection (d) of this section, if a physician, who is licensed to practice medicine in the state in which the vehicle transporting the child is registered, certifies in writing that use of a child safety seat by a particular child would be impractical due to the child's weight, height, physical unfitness, or other medical reason, there is not a violation of this section.
Child safety seat or seat belt used for 1 individual only
(g) A child safety seat or seat belt may not be used to restrain, seat, or position more than one individual at a time.
Violation of section not contributory negligence
(h) A violation of this section is not contributory negligence and may not be admitted as evidence in the trial of any civil action.
Violation of section not a moving violation
(i) A violation of this section is not considered a moving violation for purposes of § 16-402 of this article.
Failure to provide child safety seat or seat belt for more than one child
(j) The failure to provide a child safety seat or seat belt for more than one child in the same vehicle at the same time, as required by this section, shall be treated as a single violation.
Fines and penalties
(k)(1) Any person convicted of a violation of this section is subject to a fine of $50.
(2) A judge may waive the fine if the person charged with violation of this section:
(i) Did not possess a child safety seat at the time of the violation;
(ii) Acquires a child safety seat prior to the hearing date; and
(iii) Provides proof of acquisition to the court.
Implementation of Child Safety Seat Program
(l) The Department of Transportation and the Maryland Department of Health shall jointly implement the Child Safety Seat Program and foster compliance with this section through educational and promotional efforts.

Credits

Added by Acts 1983, c. 286; Acts 1983, c. 287. Amended by Acts 1984, c. 255; Acts 1988, c. 23; Acts 1991, c. 466; Acts 1992, c. 280; Acts 1992, c. 354; Acts 1996, c. 401, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 1996; Acts 1996, c. 402, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 1996; Acts 2002, c. 338, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2003; Acts 2002, c. 339, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2003; Acts 2008, c. 455, § 1, eff. June 30, 2008; Acts 2012, c. 46, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2012; Acts 2012, c. 47, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2012; Acts 2013, c. 179, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2013; Acts 2017, c. 62, § 6.

Editors' Notes

HISTORICAL AND STATUTORY NOTES
2002 Legislation
Acts 2002, c. 338, § 1, and Acts 2002, c. 339, § 1, rewrote subsec. (a)(2), which previously read:
“[(a)](2)(i) “Child safety seat” means a device that is manufactured in accordance with the 1981 Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards and is used to restrain, seat, or position a child who is transported in a motor vehicle.
“(ii) “Child safety seat” does not mean a seat belt or combination seat belt-shoulder harness.”
Acts 2002, c. 338, § 1, and Acts 2002, c. 339, § 1, also, in subsec. (d), in the introductory paragraph, inserted “in a motor vehicle registered in the State”; in subsec. (d)(1), substituted “6 years” for “4 years”; inserted subsec. (d-1), related to motor vehicles registered outside Maryland; and, in subsec. (h), substituted “suitable for securing a child either in a seat belt or in a child safety seat in accordance with this section” for “available for use by children affected by this section”.
2008 Legislation
Acts 2008, c. 455, § 1, rewrote this section, which previously read:
“(a)(1) In this section the following words have the meanings indicated.
“(2)(i) ‘Child safety seat’ means a device, including a child booster seat, that the manufacturer:
“1. Certifies is manufactured in accordance with applicable federal safety standards; and
“2. Intends to be used to restrain, seat, or position a child who is transported in a motor vehicle.
“(ii) ‘Child safety seat’ does not mean a seat belt or combination seat belt-shoulder harness used alone.
“(3)(i) ‘Seat belt’ means a restraining device described under § 22-412 of this subtitle.
“(ii) ‘Seat belt’ includes a combination seat belt-shoulder harness.
“(b) A child safety seat meets the requirements of this section only if it is installed and used in accordance with the directions of the manufacturer.
“(c) This section applies to the transportation of a child in a vehicle registered, or of a type capable of being registered, in this State as a:
“(1) Class A (passenger) vehicle;
“(2) Class E (truck) with a manufacturer's rated capacity of 3/4 ton or less, the gross vehicle weight of which does not exceed 7,000 pounds; or
“(3) Class M (multipurpose) vehicle.
“(d) A person transporting a child in a motor vehicle registered in the State shall secure the child in a child safety seat in accordance with the child safety seat and vehicle manufacturers' instructions if the child:
“(1) Is under the age of 6 years, regardless of the child's weight; or
“(2) Weighs 40 pounds or less, regardless of the child's age.
“(d-1) A person transporting a child in a motor vehicle registered in another state, in the District of Columbia, or in another country, shall secure the child in a child safety seat in accordance with the child safety seat and vehicle manufacturers' instructions if the child:
“(1) Is under the age of 4 years, regardless of the child's weight; or
“(2) Weighs 40 pounds or less, regardless of the child's age.
“(e) A person may not transport a child under the age of 16 years unless the child is secured in:
“(1) A child safety seat in accordance with the child safety seat and vehicle manufacturers' instructions; or
“(2) A seat belt.
“(f) If a physician, who is licensed to practice medicine in the state in which the vehicle transporting the child is registered, certifies in writing that use of a child safety seat by a particular child would be impractical due to the child's weight, physical unfitness, or other medical reason, there is not a violation of this section.
“(g) A child safety seat or seat belt may not be used to restrain, seat, or position more than 1 individual at a time.
“(h) If the number of children subject to the provisions of this section exceeds the number of passenger securing locations suitable for securing a child either in a seat belt or in a child safety seat in accordance with this section, and all of those securing locations are in use by children, there is not a violation of this section.
“(i) A violation of this section is not contributory negligence and may not be admitted as evidence in the trial of any civil action.
“(j) A violation of this section is not considered a moving violation for purposes of § 16-402 of this article.
“(k) The failure to provide a child safety seat or seat belt for more than 1 child in the same vehicle at the same time, as required by this section, shall be treated as a single violation.
“(l)(1) Any person convicted of a violation of this section is subject to a fine of $25.
“(2) A judge may waive the fine if the person charged with violation of this section:
“(i) Did not possess a child safety seat at the time of the violation;
“(ii) Acquires a child safety seat prior to the hearing date; and
“(iii) Provides proof of acquisition to the court.
“(m) The Department of Transportation and the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene shall jointly implement the Child Safety Seat Program and foster compliance with this section through educational and promotional efforts.”
2012 Legislation
Acts 2012, c. 46, § 1, and Acts 2012, c. 47, § 1, rewrote subsec. (d), which previously had read:
“(d) A person transporting a child under the age of 8 years in a motor vehicle shall secure the child in a child safety seat in accordance with the child safety seat and vehicle manufacturers' instructions unless the child:
“(1) Is 4 feet, 9 inches tall or taller; or
“(2) Weighs more than 65 pounds.”
2013 Legislation
Acts 2013, c. 179, § 1, deleted subsec. (h); redesignated subsecs. (i) to (m) as subsecs. (h) to (l); and in redesignated subsec. (k), substituted “$50” for “$25”. Prior to deletion, subsec. (h) had read:
“(h) Notwithstanding subsection (d) of this section, if the number of children subject to the provisions of this section exceeds the number of passenger securing locations suitable for securing a child either in a seat belt or in a child safety seat in accordance with this section, and all of those securing locations are in use by children, there is not a violation of this section.”
2017 Legislation
Acts 2017, c. 62, § 6, in (l), substituted “Maryland Department of Health” for “Department of Health and Mental Hygiene”.
MD Code, Transportation, § 22-412.2, MD TRANS § 22-412.2
Current through all legislation from the 2019 Regular Session of the General Assembly.
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