Taking a trip? You may want t be aware of cell phone laws if you plan on driving while out of state, or while out of the country. The Chicago Sun-Times recently published an article giving a list of cell phone laws throughout the United States and several other parts of the world.
Here’s what you need to know:
First, if you live in the Chicago area, you cannot use a hand-held cell phone while driving in the City of Chicago. (I learned this the hard way last year when I received a ticket.) However, you can use a hands free phone in the city.
Six states have laws against hand-held cell phone use: New Jersey, New York, Utah, Washington, California, Connecticut, and the District of Columbia.
Ten cities do not allow any cell phone use while driving: Brookline, Mass., Santa Fe, N.M., Brooklyn, North Olmstead, and Walton Hills, Ohio, Conshohocken, Lebanon, and West Conshohocken, Pa., Detroit, MI, and Waupaca County, WI.
Seventeen states have restrictions on cell phone use for newer drivers, and Louisiana has restrictions for cell phone use by teen drivers.
The following seven states ban texting while driving: Alaska, California, Connecticut, Louisiana, Minnesota, New Jersey, Washington, and the District of Columbia.
Nine states have outlawed texting for new drivers: Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Nebraska, North Carolina, Oregon, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia.
Cell phone calls while driving a school bus is against the law in seventeen states and the District of Columbia.
Eight states reportedly prohibit local government from banning cell phone use: Florida, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, Utah.
Here is what’s going on in other parts of the world:
In Europe, hand-held cell phone calls are banned in most countries.
In Australia, hand-held phone use is against the law in all states.
In Cananda, hand-held phone calls are against the law in Newfoundland, Labrador, Nova Scotia and Quebec.
In Japan, all hand-held cell phone use is against the law.
Note: The City of Chicago will soon be considering a ban on texting while driving. The law should pass, as typing a text is much more distracting than talking on a cell phone. Further, WGN News is reporting that the National Safety Council is pushing for a total ban on cell phone calls while driving, including hands-free phones.
From a Chicago car accident lawyer’s viewpoint, if involved in a crash and the other driver was on a cell phone or appeared to be using a hand held device for texting, it would be a good idea to report such information to the investigating police officer at the scene. Such information could be helpful in determining who was at fault in the accident.
If injured in an Illinois Auto Accident, contact us for a free consultation.