LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Several new state laws will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2012. Some of the most notable include new regulations for booster seats, sobriety checkpoints and handguns.
Drivers will soon have to buckle all children under the age of eight into a child safety seat or a booster seat.
The new law, which also applies to older children who are too small to wear regular seat belts, is intended to increase a child’s chance of surviving a major crash by 45 percent.
Police will also no longer be able to automatically impound vehicles at sobriety checkpoints if the motorist’s only offense is driving without a license.
Critics say the current law unfairly targets undocumented workers who cannot afford to get their cars back.
California will also become the fifth state to ban the open carrying of handguns in public.
Guns rights activists say this violates the second amendment, but proponents say it will help protect peace officers who are unable to determine whether a gun is loaded.