Raise your empty hands if you’re paying attention. Good. Because state officials really don’t want you to be distracted this week when it comes to understanding that Washington’s new ban on the use of hand-held devices while driving goes into effect on Sunday.
For drivers who think they can handle a cell phone and the wheel at the same time, strict penalties enacted by the Driving Under the Influence of Electronics Act (E-DUI) aim to change that. Whether you’re cruising down an open road or stopped at a traffic light, the law allows for no hand-held talking, texting, picture taking and so on.
Drivers are allowed to use a device if they can do it hands free and can start a function with a single touch or swipe without holding the phone, according to details provided by the state’s Target Zero website. Exceptions are also made for those who are parked or out of the flow of traffic or contacting emergency services. The state recommends that you start your GPS or music before you hit the road.