Tuesday, July 1, 2008

hands me ? the distraction or the right ?

I usually don't write about laws on my blog , but today something changed in society that i felt that was very important to write about. I first got a cell phone at 19 back then my electric blue Sony ericson was cutting edge. Nokia hadnt even given us the joy of " snake " yet . As of today California state law prohibits you from using your cell phone while driving. of course the people at motorola and other technology companies have figured out a sweet way to cash in. I feel like with our i -pods Navigation systems hands free calling were slowing turning into robots ??

Motorola / Bluetooth Hands free Headset H350

here is a question and answer form off the dmvs official website that answer a few basic questions about this new issue

Q: When do the new wireless telephone laws take effect?
A: The new laws take effect July 1, 2008.

Q: What is the difference between the two laws?
A: The first prohibits all drivers from using a handheld wireless telephone while operating a motor vehicle, (Vehicle Code (VC) §23123). Motorists 18 and over may use a "hands-free device." Drivers under the age of 18 may NOT use a wireless telephone or hands-free device while operating a motor vehicle (VC §23124).

Q: What if I need to use my telephone during an emergency, and I do not have a "hands-free" device?
A: The law allows a driver to use a wireless telephone to make emergency calls to a law enforcement agency, a medical provider, the fire department, or other emergency services agency.

Q: What are the fines(s) if I’m convicted?
A: The base fine for the FIRST offense is $20 and $50 for subsequent convictions. With the addition of penalty assessments, the fines can be more than triple the base fine amount.

Q: Will I receive a point on my driver license if I’m convicted for a violation of the wireless telephone law?
A: No. The violation is a reportable offense, however, DMV will not assign a violation point.

Q: Will the conviction appear on my driving record?
A: Yes, but the violation point will not be added.

Q: Will there be a grace period when motorists will only get a warning?
A: No. The law becomes effective July 1, 2008. Whether a citation is issued is always at the discretion of the officer based upon his or her determination of the most appropriate remedy for the situation.

Q: Are passengers affected by this law?
A: No. This law only applies to the person driving a motor vehicle.

Q: Do these laws apply to out-of-state drivers whose home states do not have such laws?
A: Yes.

Q: Can I be pulled over by a law enforcement officer for using my handheld wireless telephone?
A: Yes. A law enforcement officer can pull you over just for this infraction.

Q: What if my phone has a push-to-talk feature, can I use that?
A: No. The law does provide an exception for those operating a commercial motor truck or truck tractor (excluding pickups), implements of husbandry, farm vehicle or tow truck, to use a two-way radio operated by a “push-to-talk” feature. However, a push-to-talk feature attached to a hands-free ear piece or other hands-free device is acceptable.

Q: What other exceptions are there?
A: Operators of an authorized emergency vehicle during the course of employment are exempt, as are those motorists operating a vehicle on private property.

I'm a fan of technology i use it all the time  in my day to day life ,  
It makes me wonder ... that the machines we create to make our lives easier almost end up complicating them and making us all together lazier ? is it our right to talk where ever and when ever we want ?? we pay the phone companies ? I'm very interested in seeing how many citizens follow the new laws and how many revolt in the name of .. " freedom of speech " ?

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