The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Our Readers Speak

December 11, 2013

Our Readers Speak — Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Drivers need to know distracted driving law

I am writing for assistance from you in an attempt to help educate the West Virginia public about the distracted driving law. In my case, as I feel is with many others, this new law was not presented to the public good enough to educate us properly or we read into it improperly.

I feel this law is very much misinterpreted by all citizens in our area. I felt that distracted driving meant we could not use our cell phones while driving. So it would lead us to believe that if we were at a stop sign or a red light and not driving, then it would be OK to make a quick call before taking off again.

This is illegal and will get you a ticket.

Also it would lead us to believe that if we were stopped in a state road work area, knowing we will have to wait anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes before being able to move again, we could place our vehicle in park, shut off the engine and use our cell phone legally until it is our turn to continue and we would then put the phone down, start our cars and move on.

This is illegal and did get me a ticket.

So getting a real life EXPENSIVE lesson on the new law should be told to everyone so they will be aware of these misunderstandings. Your first ticket is $100.

 From what the officer told me after giving me my ticket, the only way to use a cell phone is to have a hands-free Bluetooth device or you must pull your car WAY off the highway or preferably into a parking lot, place your car in park and turn off the engine.

Also be advised that pulling off the side of the interstate to use a cell phone would be illegal also due to the fact that you can only pull off the interstate in the case of an emergency only!

Hope everyone is safe out there with your cell phone usage.

Dale Starks


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