IN WHICH STATES IS CELL PHONE USE WHILE DRIVING ILLEGAL?

IN WHICH STATES IS CELL PHONE USE WHILE DRIVING ILLEGAL?

 

If you’ve wondered what the law is in your state regarding cell phone use while operating a vehicle or texting and driving, you’re not alone. Legal jargon and fluff can make it somewhat confusing to understand the legality. That’s why we here at Sentinel, decided to break it down for you. So you have that “ah-ha, now I get it moment.”

This article gives a breakdown of distracted driving laws by each state and the violations and penalties faced if an adult or teenage driver can expect if being stopped by police for distracted driving. Whether you’re seeking to move to a new state, driving through a specific state, or visiting a new U.S. city, it’s important to know these laws as not all distracted driving laws are created equal throughout the United States.

Notes:

Primary Offense: An offense which a law enforcement officer can stop a car and issue a citation for violating driving laws.

Secondary Offense: An offense in which a driver or a passenger a get a citation AFTER a driver has been pulled over for a primary offense.

 

 

 

 

All cell phone ban Texting ban Enforcement Crash Data Collection 
Alabama No Drivers age 16 and 17 who have held an intermediate license for less than 6 months. All drivers Primary
Alaska No No All drivers Primary Yes
Arizona No School bus drivers; Learner’s permit and provisional license holders during the first six months after licensing (effective 6/30/2018) No Primary: cell phone use by school bus drivers
Secondary: cell phone use by young drivers (effective 6/30/2018)
Yes
Arkansas Drivers ages 18 to 20 years of age; school and highway work zones School bus drivers, drivers younger than 18 All drivers Primary: for texting by all drivers and cell phone use by school bus drivers.
Secondary: for cell phone use by young drivers, drivers in school and work zones
Yes
California All drivers School and transit bus drivers and drivers younger than 18 All drivers Primary: hand held and texting by all drivers.
Secondary: all cell phone use by young drivers.
Yes
Colorado No Drivers younger than 18 All drivers Primary Yes
Connecticut All drivers Learner’s permit holders, drivers younger than 18, and school bus drivers All drivers Primary
Delaware All drivers Learner’s permit and intermediate license holders and school bus drivers All drivers Primary Yes
District of Columbia All drivers School bus drivers and learner’s permit holders All drivers Primary Yes
Florida No No All drivers Secondary Yes
Georgia Yes (eff. 7/1/18) School bus drivers. Drivers younger than 18. All drivers Primary Yes
Hawaii All Drivers Drivers younger than 18 All Drivers Primary
Idaho No No All Drivers Primary Yes***
Illinois All Drivers Learner’s permit holders younger than 19, drivers younger than 19, and school bus drivers All drivers Primary Yes
Indiana No Drivers under the age of 21. All drivers Primary Yes
Iowa No Learner’s permit and intermediate license holders All drivers Primary: for all offenses (effective July 1, 2017). Yes
Kansas No Learner’s permit and intermediate license holders All drivers Primary Yes
Kentucky No Drivers younger than 18, School Bus Drivers. All drivers Primary Yes
Louisiana No School bus drivers, learner’s permit and intermediate license holders, drivers under age 18 All drivers Primary Yes
Maine** No Learner’s permit and intermediate license holders All drivers Primary Yes
Maryland All drivers, School Bus Drivers. Learner’s permit and intermediate license holders under 18. School bus drivers. All drivers Primary Yes
Massachusetts Local option School bus drivers,
passenger bus drivers, drivers younger than 18.
All drivers Primary Yes
Michigan Local option Level 1 or 2 license holders. All drivers Primary Yes
Minnesota No School bus drivers, learner’s permit holders, and provisional license holders during the first 12 months after licensing All drivers Primary Yes
Mississippi No School bus drivers. All drivers Primary Yes
Missouri No No Drivers 21 years or younger. Primary
Montana No No No Not applicable Yes
Nebraska No Learner’s permit and intermediate license holders younger than 18 All drivers Secondary Yes
Nevada All drivers No All drivers Primary Yes
New Hampshire Yes Drivers younger than 18 All drivers Primary
New Jersey All drivers School bus drivers, and learner’s permit and intermediate license holders All drivers Primary Yes
New Mexico Local option Learner’s permit and intermediate license holders. All Drivers Primary Yes
New York All drivers No All drivers Primary Yes
North Carolina No Drivers younger than 18 and school bus drivers All drivers Primary
North Dakota No Drivers younger than 18 All drivers Primary Yes
Ohio Local option Drivers younger than 18. All drivers Primary: for drivers younger than 18.
Secondary: for texting by all drivers.
Oklahoma Learner’s permit and intermediate license holders, school bus drivers and public transit drivers School Bus Drivers and Public Transit Drivers All Drivers. Primary Yes
Oregon All drivers Drivers younger than 18 All drivers Primary Yes
Pennsylvania Local option No All drivers Primary Yes
Puerto Rico All drivers All drivers Primary
Rhode Island Yes School bus drivers and drivers younger than 18 All drivers Primary Yes
South Carolina No No All drivers Primary Yes***
South Dakota No Learner’s permit and intermediate license holders All drivers Secondary Yes
Tennessee Drivers in marked school zones (effective 01/01/18) School bus drivers, and learner’s permit and intermediate license holders All drivers Primary Yes
Texas Drivers in school crossing zones Bus drivers. Drivers younger than 18 All drivers (effective 09/01/2017) Primary Yes
Utah See footnote* Drivers under
the age of 18.
All drivers Primary for texting; secondary for talking on hand-held phone Yes
Vermont All drivers Drivers younger than 18 All drivers Primary
Virgin Islands Yes Yes
Virginia No Drivers younger than 18 and school bus drivers  All drivers Primary: for texting by all drivers.
Secondary: for drivers younger than 18.
Yes
Washington All drivers Learner’s permit and intermediate license holders.  All drivers Primary Yes
West Virginia All Drivers Drivers younger than 18 who hold either a learner’s permit or an intermediate license  All drivers Primary
Wisconsin No Learner’s permit or
intermediate
license holder
All drivers Primary
Wyoming No No All drivers Primary Yes
Total All drivers: 15 states and District of Columbia, Guam, Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. School Bus drivers: 21 states and District of Columbia.
Teen drivers: 38 states and District of Columbia.
All Drivers: 47 states and District of Columbia, Guam, Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. Primary for all drivers texting: 43 states, District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.
Secondary for all drivers texting: 4.
40 states, U.S. Virgin Islands and District of Columbia.
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