Washington State distracted driving law?

Discussion in 'On the Road' started by KB7KJY, Oct 10, 2019.

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  1. W5GX

    W5GX Ham Member QRZ Page

    Every article I found had a gross lack in references. Maybe I just missed them. Lucky, amateur radio enjoys some pretty generous exceptions.

    Welcome back to the hobby!
    KB7KJY and K3XR like this.
  2. WA7PRC

    WA7PRC Ham Member QRZ Page

    However, those exceptions don't make it safer for everyone else. Exceptions make sense for those who NEED to use their devices while in motion. IMO, ragchewing while in motion isn't a necessity.
  3. KB7KJY

    KB7KJY Ham Member QRZ Page

    I was working with the Sheriffs office here when the law was passed. I heard numerous comments about how redundant it was as we already had laws on the books that covered distracted driving. What does passing a second law for something that is covered by existing laws?

    Regarding safety and operating mobile :

    If you want absolute safety then we need to ban cars. You accept a certain level of risk in exchange for the benefits offered by automobile travel.

    It is wise to do all that you can, within reason, to mitigate that risk.

    There are a number of things that I won't do while driving even if they are legal. Hand dialing my smartphone, operate a TS-50 or anything that takes my attention away from my driving.

    There are some things that I am OK with. Talking to my passanger, answering a call on my hands-free device or talking on the local repeater using the wired microphone. Provided that I don't have to take my eyes off of the road.

    We make decisions constantly to managage risk. Life is dangerous.

    Just my $0.02
  4. W5GX

    W5GX Ham Member QRZ Page

    Meh. Amateur radio isn't statistical enough.

    http://www.arrl.org/files/file/Regulatory/Mobile ARS Policy 2014 October.pdf

  5. AG6QR

    AG6QR Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    In order to make a ticket stick, it's usually necessary for an officer to witness a violation, or for the violation to be established by other solid evidence.

    If the law says it's ok to hold your phone as long as you're not listening to it, everyone would claim to the judge that they were just holding the phone and not using it. The law would be virtually unenforceable.
  6. K3XR

    K3XR Ham Member QRZ Page

    It's possible for law enforcement to obtain court-ordered cell phone records to prove the case.
  7. AG6QR

    AG6QR Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    For phone calls, perhaps, though there still may be contention that the officer's wristwatch wasn't synchronized with the time recorded by the phone company. And they'd have to determine the phone number of the phone being used by the driver (not necessarily the one owned by the driver).

    But there are other apps which don't communicate through the cell towers while they're being used. Text messaging only communicates briefly when a message is sent or received, but not when the message is actually read by the recipient, nor when the keys are being pressed to compose a message. Even phone calls don't communicate with the tower while you're pressing the numbers to dial, only when you finish typing in or selecting the number and tell the phone to start the call. Being head-down dialing a number is a distracting thing that won't show up on the phone records if you put the phone down before you finish placing the call because you heard the siren.

    Anyway, if you think it should be legal to hold a phone while driving as long as you're not listening to it, take it up with your legislators.
  8. WA7PRC

    WA7PRC Ham Member QRZ Page

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  9. W5GX

    W5GX Ham Member QRZ Page

    Oh, I get it. I'm willing to agree most officers would use his discretion between 'using' the device and just adjusting its location from one place to another. And statistically, that situation may never arise. So, I'd concede it's likely all be moot.
  10. K3XR

    K3XR Ham Member QRZ Page

    "Texting and Driving: 3 Ways to Prove It"

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