New “Hands Free Law” will ban Cellphones while driving
Posted by DeBerry Insurance Agency on
By Eric DeBerry
Owner, DeBerry Insurance Agency
As your hometown insurance agency, we have been cautioning drivers against cellphone use while driving for many years. It is no secret that auto accidents due to distracted driving are increasing in number. Single car accidents resulting from distracted driving are especially on the rise.
This July, a new law will go into effect for the entire State of Tennessee. This new law bans drivers from handheld cellphone use while driving. We want to support this new law as an important step toward making our roads safer by helping to get the word out! Through this new law, the State of Tennessee hopes to eliminate distracted driving-related fatalities and injuries for good.
This week, we had the chance to speak with Detective Michael Foster at the Spring Hill Police Headquarters to learn more about the new cell phone law. Here is a list of what you need to know “FAQ” style!
#1. When does the new law go into effect? The new cellphone law goes into effect July 1, 2019. According to Detective Foster, law enforcement will be giving a little grace period to drivers as awareness surrounding the new law increases. However, it’s better to be aware and begin following the new parameters now.
#2. What does the new law prohibit? The new law prohibits a person from physically holding or supporting a wireless telecommunications device or stand alone electronic device with any part of their body while operating a motor vehicle. Drivers are prohibited from writing, sending or reading any text based communication while driving. Also, drivers are prohibited from reaching for a handheld device in a manner that keeps them from remaining in the proper, seat-belted position for driving. Drivers cannot watch movies or videos or record or broadcast videos while driving.
#3. Is there any time that it is o.k. to use a handheld device while driving? It is permissible to use mobile communication through blue tooth. Drivers are permitted to activate a device, including a navigation device, through a single button or swipe. Drivers can utilize an ear piece.
#4. What plans does SHPD have to enforce this new law? Officers will be on the lookout for violators of the new law. Officers are becoming educated on the parameters of the new law.
#5. What are the consequences for violating the law? The first offense is a $50 fine. Fines gradually increase and can be higher if the violation takes place within a school or construction zone.
The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security is partnering with the Tennessee Department of Transportation and the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development to launch “Hands Free Tennessee.” The purpose of this campaign is to educate Tennesseans about the state’s new “Hands Free Law,” known as Public Chapter No. 412, which takes effect on July 1, 2019. This new law requires drivers to put down their phones and focus on the road. This information is available on the website HandsFreeTN.com.
DeBerry Insurance is proud to serve as your Hometown Insurance Agency! We are here to provide the best price, coverage and service for all of your insurance needs. Call us at 931-486-3300 or come by our office at 5232 Main Street in Spring Hill, TN. We also invite you to request a free quote on our website.