The Monrovia Police Department will begin a two-week enhanced enforcement effort Monday targeting motorists who don't comply with seat belt laws, including those who fail to secure children in safety seats.
"Seat belts have proven time and time again to be life-savers," said Monrovia police Sgt. Chad Harvey. "Buckling up should be second nature."
California has one of the highest seat belt use rates in the nation -- a compliance rate of 96.2 percent, Harvey said.
"However, 532 people killed in crashes statewide last year were not wearing a seat belt," he said. "Putting on a seat belt takes a few seconds and is your best protection in a crash."
Under California law, children under 2 years old, those weighing less than 40 pounds and those under 40 inches in height are required to be secured in a rear-facing car seat. Children under the age of 8 must be secured in a car seat or booster seat.
California has a "primary seat belt law," which allows law enforcement officers to ticket someone for not wearing a seat belt without committing another traffic violation, Harvey said.
Funding for the increased enforcement effort is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.