Every North Carolina driver has seen someone driving beside them while operating a smartphone. Some drivers reading this blog may even be guilty of this unlawful and highly dangerous behavior.
Considering that most people own a smartphone these days, the problem of driving while using a smartphone is only getting worse. For this reason, many states are ramping up the severity of their "E-DUI" laws. Hopefully, North Carolina will also continue to enforce its texting-while driving laws more stringently -- as well as updating the laws to be stricter.
In North Carolina, the laws that apply to smartphone use while driving are particularly lax. Police officers need to actually witness drivers texting to pull them over. Furthermore, the law doesn't specifically outlaw other uses of smartphones, like video game playing. In this respect, a driver could be playing a video game while driving and not be in violation of the law. Or, a driver might be browsing the internet or watching a movie and not be at risk of getting pulled over or issued a citation.
Neighboring South Carolina is currently working on a new law that would make using smartphones to play video games and do other distracting activities illegal. The law would also increase fines from $25 up to $500.
Were you or a family member injured by a distracted driver in North Carolina? You might be able to pursue financial damages in court via a personal injury claim. A personal injury lawyer can evaluate the facts surrounding your car accident and injuries to give you advice and guidance about your legal rights in this regard.
Source: wcnc.com, "New 'E-DUI' law cracks down on driving under influence of phones loading," Billie Jean Shaw, July 20, 2017