(a) A person who knowingly allows the use or who uses the 911 emergency system for any reason other than because of an emergency is guilty of an infraction, punishable as follows:
(1) For a first violation, a written warning shall be issued to the violator by the public safety entity originally receiving the telephone call or the communication from an electronic device describing the punishment for subsequent violations. The written warning shall inform the recipient to notify the issuing agency that the warning was issued inappropriately if the recipient did not make, or knowingly allow the use of the 911 emergency system for, the nonemergency 911 telephone call or the communication from an electronic device. The law enforcement agency may provide educational materials regarding the appropriate use of the 911 emergency system.
(2) For a second or subsequent violation, a citation may be issued by the public safety entity originally receiving the telephone call or the communication from an electronic device pursuant to which the violator shall be subject to the following penalties that may be reduced by a court upon consideration of the violator’s ability to pay:
(A) For a second violation, a fine of fifty dollars ($50).
(B) For a third violation, a fine of one hundred dollars ($100).
(C) For a fourth or subsequent violation, a fine of two hundred and fifty dollars ($250).
(b) The parent or legal guardian having custody and control of an unemancipated minor who violates this section shall be jointly and severally liable with the minor for the fine imposed pursuant to this section.
(c) For purposes of this section, “emergency” means any condition in which emergency services will result in the saving of a life, a reduction in the destruction of property, quicker apprehension of criminals, or assistance with potentially life-threatening medical problems, a fire, a need for rescue, an imminent potential crime, or a similar situation in which immediate assistance is required.
(d) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), this section shall not apply to a telephone corporation or any other entity for acts or omissions relating to the routine maintenance, repair, or operation of the 911 emergency system or the 311 telephone system.
(Amended by Stats. 2016, Ch. 96, Sec. 2. (AB 1769) Effective January 1, 2017.)
Last modified: October 25, 2018