Oregon Cell Phone Ban: Police expect challenges

By Peter Chubb - Jan 4, 2010

New year’s was a busy time for Oregon police officers, as a new cell phone ban came into force on that day. The police have said that they were expecting motorists to argue the point with them about the new law, which prohibits them from using a hand-held cell phone while driving.

The law is not a total ban, those who need to use their phone for business use, such as delivery, taxi and tow truck drivers are exempt from the ban. As you would expect some motorists will try to get around a loophole in the law. If a driver is pulled over for talking on their hand-held cell phone, they will say that they had to phone a work colleague. This is according to a recent report on ABC News.

Police Lt. Gregg Hastings, and Oregon State Police officer has said that this is certainly a grey area stating, “It doesn’t clearly define what jobs fall under the exemption.” He then added that a judge might have to clarify on this law.

Oregon is the latest in a handful of states imposing this ban; those caught violating the law will face a minimum fine of $142. ABC News also states that Oregon is the only state to have a broader exemption policy, which is likely to cause confusion and the idea that a driver could get out of paying the fine.

Over countries such as the UK has a total ban on cell phone use while driving, although this has done little to deter drivers from breaking that law.

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