In one month, don’t talk and drive

January 1st is the date the new cellphone law goes into effect: if you talk on your cellphone while driving and are not using a hands-free device, you can be pulled over and fined $90. Are you ready for that? The Bulletin ran an article today on the subject.

Passed by the Oregon Legislature earlier this year, the new law bars drivers younger than 18 from using a cell phone behind the wheel at all — with or without a hands-free device — and outlaws text messaging while driving for all drivers.

Violation of the law will be considered a “primary” offense, meaning police will be authorized to pull over and cite drivers observed texting or holding a phone to their ear.

A hands-free device is a headset or earpiece that connects to a phone by wire or with a wireless signal, allowing an individual to talk on the phone without the use of their hands. Under the new law, drivers will be permitted to handle their phone to answer a call, dial a number or hang up, but must use the hands-free device while conversing.

The article also covers the exemption to the law: if you are driving and using a cellphone "in the scope of" your job. But it’s pretty clear no one knows what that means.

So what does everyone think? Are we going to see an uptick on people being pulled over around town come January 1st?

4 thoughts on “In one month, don’t talk and drive

  1. "So what does everyone think? Are we going to see an uptick on people being pulled over around town come January 1st?"

    *meh* Maybe for a month or so, if the powers that be decide it’s worth calling attention to. But after that, probably not. As @lightcap says, "We have laws against reckless driving already, people. Cell phone bans are stupid. I’m looking at you driving-while-eating-cheeseburger guy."

  2. I think it is more dangerous that when the phone rings I am looking all over the car for my bluetooth and not at the road.

  3. I have no idea how on earth they can inforce such a ban. Now people will text in their lap instead of on their steering wheel…

    much safer eh?

  4. Phones and driving do not go well together. I am totally in support of this new law, and hope that it is enforced.

    More often than not, if I see erratic driving behavior the person is on the phone. I don’t ever talk on the phone in the car, it is simply not safe… and I’m smart enough to come to that conclusion on my own, law or no law.

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