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Driving While Talking: California's Newest Crime

Hang Up And Drive

Come July 1, 2008, Californians won't be able to be so talkative while driving a car or truck.  That's because a new law requires drivers to use a hands-free device for talking on their cell phones.  No more driving with one hand on the wheel, one hand on the cell phone and your mind somewhere else. 

Well, you'll still be able to have your mind somewhere else, just not with one hand on the cell phone.

Other drivers across the state are rejoicing, calling the new law an important step for safety.  "Hang up and drive," one Californian was heard to shout at another driver, while honking his horn. 

Essentially, if you make or receive phone calls other than emergencies, then you must have a hands-free way of talking.  Motorists who don't can be pulled over and cited, $20 for the first offense and $50 for subsequent violations.  If you're under 18 and driving, you can't use any type of wireless device to communicate, regardless whether you have a hands-free phone.

The CHP offers these tips for your safety. 

Posted by J. Craig Williams on Wednesday, June 11, 2008


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