Distracted Driving Laws
The state of New York is one of the toughest states in the U.S. for distracted driving laws. According to state law, texting while driving is considered a form of driver inattention. The definition of driver inattention, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, is a driver engaged in a secondary task, drowsiness or a non-driving related glance away from the roadway.
In California, you cannot use a cell phone or similar electronic communication device while holding it in your hand. You can only use it in a hands-free manner. Any driver under the age of 18 is prohibited from using a cell phone for any reason.
There are a number of penalties a driver can face if they’re charged with distracted driving in New York. The most common penalties for distracted driving include:
- Fines between $50-$450
- Driver’s license suspension
- Driver’s license revocation
The penalties for drivers who cause an accident because they were texting are more severe. In the worst-case scenario, drivers who cause accidents that result in death can be charged with reckless driving or manslaughter. Both charges are felonies.