Put Down Your Phone: WSP’s Watching for Distracted Drivers
You can get an E-DUI traffic ticket if the police catch you using your cellphone, thanks to a state law in effect since 2017.
That means if they catch you typing messages, attempting to get info from your phone, using the phone camera or watching videos, you'll get in big old fat trouble, with a capital T.
From now until April 14, the Washington State Patrol will be doing extra monitoring of people operating vehicles while distracted.
You'll still be able to use your cellphone in the car if you are:
- Parked away from regular traffic flow
- Using your phone's GPS system (before you start driving)
- Playing music from your phone (before you start driving)
- Calling 9-1-1 for emergency assistance
- Using your phone's Bluetooth function to go hands-free
Another reason to beware: You might be given a distracted driver ticket if an officer thinks you are not driving safely because you are doing one of the following:
- Eating food
- Reading something in your car
- Personal grooming
Pay closer attention to what you are doing inside of your car because even if you don't think you're driving distracted, the State Patrol might think otherwise! First-time offenders will have to fork out $136 for the ticket. If you get busted two or more times, the ticket will be $234 -- plus it will go on your driving record and will likely cause your car insurance rates to skyrocket! Yikes!