Keep Your Thumbs on the Wheel
Dec 23, 2016
Governor Brown has signed a number of bills to take effect on January 1, 2017. One such bill is Assembly Bill 1785 which has been added to the existing Vehicle Code 23123.5. This new bill will further restrict the use of mobile devices while driving. While we all know at this point that it is against the law to use a mobile device to talk or text while driving, this law expands restrictions to include the holding and operating of a mobile device while driving. And yes, this means no more selfies while you’re sitting in traffic.
What about if you are lost and need to use the GPS app on your phone? The Good news! You can still use your phone as a GPS device as long as it is mounted onto your windshield or dashboard. Trust me, I would be lost too if I had to dust off my Thomas Bros or use a printout from Google maps.
Be warned: having you’re phone on the windshield or dash doesn’t mean you can go back to playing Super Mario while driving. The law specifies the driver can only use a single swipe or tap of one’s finger. So keep your eyes on the road and stay safe out there.
If you chose to NOT follow the new law, the first time infraction fee is $20 and $50 for each subsequent infraction. Anybody who has ever paid an infraction will tell you, these initial charges do not include the other court and administrative fees. In the end, you will end up paying much, much more. So ask yourself, how much is that selfie really worth to you?
Efren is a Library Assistant at our Temecula Law Resource Center.