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Police to emphasize child safety restraints

Spokane sheriff’s deputies and Spokane Valley police will be monitoring traffic at seven locations through this month to increase enforcement and public awareness of child safety restraint laws.

The emphasis patrols start today from 1 to 6 p.m. at Broadway Avenue and Sullivan Road.

They continue on Wednesday from 1 to 6 p.m. at 57th Avenue and Regal Street on the city’s South Side.

Other patrols are Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Boulder Beach area of Upriver Drive and at the Spokane Valley Mall; on July 24 from 1 to 6 p.m. at Division Street and Francis Avenue; on July 25 at Valley Mission Park from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; and on July 31 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Harvard Road and Wellesley Avenue.

The patrols are part of a statewide effort to improve compliance with the state’s child safety restraint laws through a grant from the Washington Traffic Safety Commission. Fines for violations are $124.

Here are the basic rules for child restraints:

•Until age 13, children must ride in the rear seat of the vehicle.

•Children from newborn through 12 months and less than 20 pounds must be placed in a rear-facing infant seat. Drivers should use that seat for as long as the seat allows.

•From age 13 months to 4 years, children should be in a child car seat with a five-point harness.

•From age 4 until the child is 4 feet 9 inches tall, children should ride in a booster seat. Boosters should only be placed with a lap and shoulder belt.

•In all cases, the seat equipment, harnesses and belts must be installed and used properly.