Wednesday, May 26, 2010

They're Not Joking When They Say 'Hands-Free'

Okay folks, here's the reality of the situation. June 10 is coming up real quick and I'm not ready. That's the day it becomes a primary offense to use your cell phone without a hands-free device while driving. That means a police officer can pull you over if they see you doing that, they don't have to get you on another offense.

No, I don't talk on the phone while driving, or text. But occasionally I do check a text while at a stoplight or listen to a voicemail while stuck in traffic (very occasionally since we don't generally get stuck in traffic around here). Sounds acceptable, right? No, it's not.

ANY use of a non-hands free wireless device while behind the wheel with the motor running is ILLEGAL. And another thing, don't assume you can just pull the car over to the shoulder of the highway to answer the phone when it rings. That's illegal too.

So here's what I'm going to do; put my purse in the trunk of the car for a while until I get used to not checking texts, etc. at lights. Got any other great ideas for me?


BiketoWork Barb said...

So here's the funny thing I've realized about my beloved new Droid: Since all phone functions are on the screen--everything from answering to dialing--there's no way to deal with the phone without breaking this law unless I already have my Bluetooth in my ear like a piece of jewelry (which isn't really that good for you--you should take it out when you're not using it).

I can't legally place a call because I can't punch in numbers without looking at the screen the way I could back in the "old days" of having actual buttons with numbers on the face of the phone.

I definitely don't want to drive distracted, but this phone really makes sure I won't even be tempted until/unless I get around to setting up the voice command system.

Good thing I bike most of the time anyway.


SRTC Staff said...

I have been slow to get on the Droid bandwagon just because I have enough gadget already I don't know how to work but if it can help me with my bad habits, maybe I need to invest.

Not said...

Ford's new "Sync" system will read your text messages to you. Unfortunately, you would have to buy a Ford vehicle to get it.
- Ventura

SRTC Staff said...

Are you kidding me?? Okay, while technology IS pretty cool, am I the only one who thinks that things have gone too far when a car reads you your messages? For the love of pete, you CAN put down your phone for FIVE MINUTES. Okay, rant over now.

About SRTC

SRTC is the federally designated Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for Spokane County. Urbanized areas with populations exceeding 50,000 people are required to have an MPO. SRTC was formed to address the county's transportation planning needs. It provides coordination in planning between the public, cities, small towns, the county, the state, transit providers, and tribes.

SRTC offers services including transportation monitoring, transportation modeling, census information analysis, travel demand forecasting, historical traffic count analysis, geographic information systems, and trip generation rates.