A New State Law on Distracted Driving is in Effect
ZANESVILLE, Ohio – A new state law now makes it easier for police to ticket drivers in Ohio for distracted driving.
The law that went into effect Monday, October 29th makes distracted driving a secondary offense. That means police who pull over motorists for a traffic violation could give them an addition ticket if any distracted driving contributed to the offense.
Zanesville Post Commander, Lieutenant Matt Boyd said, “Well there’s a lot of things that are distracting. Most of the time people think of texting, that’s kind of the most common thing people think of. Really there’s a lot of things that could be considered distracted-driving, putting on makeup, eating, turn around talking to passengers.”
The punishment for a distracted-driving offense is either $100 or a distracted-driving safety course. The fine would be dropped if the driver proves completion of the online safety course.
“Reading. I’ve actually seen people reading, driving down the road. Things like that. So it’s not just talking on the phone or texting that are distracted-driving,” Boyd said.
Texting while driving was already a secondary offense in Ohio, but the new law broadens “distracted” to include any activity that’s not necessary for driving. It can include actions like eating or adjusting the radio.
You can find more information about the new law by looking up House Bill 95. If you are required to take the safety course, you can go to the driver training website.