Many people are aware that texting while driving is illegal in Tennessee. This law was passed in 2009 to combat the growing epidemic of distracted driving throughout the state and the nation.
In 2017, the distracted driving ban was extended to the usage of all handheld mobile devices while in school zones to protect children, crossing guards, and parents. And in 2019, handheld mobile devices were banned across the board while operating a motor vehicle, regardless of location.
What does that mean for you? It means you can’t text while driving, but that has been illegal for over a decade already. It also means you can’t hold your cell phone to send text messages, browse the internet, check email, or even make phone calls. You also can’t pick up your phone while driving to change GPS directions or music apps.
To use your phone legally while driving, it must be done via a hands-free system. That means using voice commands on your phone or through your vehicle’s Bluetooth connectivity, or by using a wireless headset. As long as you aren’t touching your phone, you can use it legally while driving.
But it’s important to note that although legal in Tennessee, even hands-free usage can still be distracting. It’s best to avoid using your phone as much as possible while driving, and if you need to make a phone call or send a text message, pull over in a safe location first.
At Ponce Law, we’re always helping people hurt by negligent drivers, including distracted ones. If you were injured by a distracted motorist, our Nashville auto accident lawyers are here to help. Contact us today for a free consultation.