Hands-Free Cell Phone Law Coming To Idaho July First
In an attempt to address safety issues associated with distracted driving, Idaho will be requiring cell phones to be in hands-free mode while driving. This includes while the vehicle is in motion and when stopped at a traffic light or stop sign. This new, called HB614, included in Idaho State Code 49-1401A makes the hand-held use of a phone when driving illegal. Penalties for not obeying the new ordinance include $75 for the first offense, $150 for a second offense within 3 years, and $300 for three or more offenses within 3 years and possible license suspension.
For the first few month the law takes effect officers will issue warnings and citations can be issued beginning January 1st, 2020. The six month educational period will give Idaho drivers time to adjust and make sure they understand and follow the new law.
Idaho drivers should know the following regarding the new law:
- Drivers can only use electronic devices and mobile phones in hands-free mode.
- Drivers are only permitted to touch devices to activate hands-free mode.
- Drivers are not permitted to hold or support any electronic device/phone.
- Activation of GPS, voice to text, and making or receiving calls is permitted with one-touch or voice command.
- Handheld use is allowed only if the vehicle is both stationary and not located in a public travel lane, or in the event of an emergency.
- Drivers are not allowed to touch a device for texting, emailing, apps, video, or internet use.