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?