There is a good chance you have checked your phone at a red light. Maybe you are responding to a quick text, putting on a different song, or using your GPS. Acts like this may soon be illegal in New Jersey, and for good reason. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), driving a vehicle while texting is six times more dangerous than intoxicated driving. In addition, distracted driving has been the leading cause of fatal crashes in New Jersey since 2011. As a result, New Jersey lawmakers are cracking down. A new bill has been introduced, under which using your cell phone at a red light would carry the same penalties as other cell phone violations.
What is a Cell Phone Violation?
The following are considered cell phone violations in New Jersey:
- Talking on a handheld mobile phone
- Writing, sending, reading or receiving any data over the phone. This may include text messages, emails, or the use of social media
- Searching through the internet
- Watching or taking any pictures or videos
- Playing games
Using your phone at a red light may soon be added to this list.
What are the Penalties?
The following are fines for a cell phone violation in New Jersey. Under the proposed bill, using your phone at a red light would carry the same fines:
- First offense: a fine between $200 and $400.
- Second offense: a fine ranging between $400-$600 dollars
- Third offense: a fine ranging between $600 and $800 dollars and 3 points to one’s license
What if I Need to Check my Phone?
There are some cases in which you need to check your phone. In New Jersey, it is still legal to pull over to the side of the road to use your cell phone.
What if I am Pulled Over for a Cell Phone Violation?
Cell phone violations carry heavy fines, which can significantly impact your financial future. Additionally, points on your license can increase insurance premiums. Multiple cell phone violations may even lead to a suspended license. If you are pulled over, you should retain the help of a skilled criminal defense attorney. A traffic violations attorney will work to lower your fines and/or points on your license.
If you or a loved one is pulled over for a cell phone violation in New Jersey, reach out to our firm today.
Contact our Firm
Our firm understands how serious criminal and personal injury cases are. We are prepared to guide you towards a favorable outcome because we believe false accusations or preventable injuries should never cause a person harm. This is why those who require experienced legal counsel in New Jersey should do themselves a favor and contact The Law Office of Andrew S. Maze today for any criminal and personal injury matters.