Spokane

Change in distracted driving law seeks to prevent serious crashes

Change in distracted driving law...

SPOKANE, Wash. - Washington is just days ahead of a change in law that will soon make holding your cell phone while driving illegal, even at a stop light.

The state calls it an effort to stop distracted driving and prevent serious crashes.

“We've seen collisions involving distracted drivers increase immensely so the legislature acted,” said Trooper Jeff Sevigney.

It's already illegal to text and drive in Washington and hold the phone up to your ear.

This new law, which goes into effect July 23, makes it illegal to even hold a phone while driving.

So the big message to drivers is really to put your phone away so you don't get in a crash.

There is one exception. You can mount your phone to the car dash, and make one swipe to activate a call or app. That's it.

“And really we recommend folks don't even do that because that one second you look down to swipe it could cost someone their life,” said Sevigney.

The new law also cracks down on drivers grooming, smoking, and eating in their car. Those are secondary offenses.

The bottom line is that you should wait until you get to your destination to Facebook, or call grandma back.

Put your phone away while you're driving and you won't have any problems.

If you're caught red handed, you'll have to hand over $136 to the state of Washington.


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