Distracted driving is a highly dangerous behavior that can cause severe accidents and significant
injuries. As the hazards of distracted driving have become increasingly
apparent, state and local governments have enacted laws to curb the issue.
In New York, a distracted driving offense can result in heavy fines and
limited driving privileges.
Texting and Driving and Cell Phone Use Laws
Any use of handheld electronic devices while driving is prohibited in the
state of New York. Drivers are only permitted to make calls or send text
messages by using hands-free, voice-activated devices. All other activity
that requires the use of a handheld cell phone or tablet is against the
law, including making calls, sending and reading messages, taking pictures,
looking at social media pages, and using navigation apps. There is an
exception in the law that drivers may use a handheld device to contact
the police, fire department, or medical personnel in the event of an emergency.
A person who violates these laws may face a minimum fine of $50. Maximum
fines for distracted driving in New York are as follows:
$200 fine for a first offense
$250 fine for a second offense within 18 months of the last offense
$450 fine for a third offense or additional offenses within 18 months of
the last offense
Are Other Types of Distracted Driving Illegal in New York?
Distracted driving is commonly associated with texting and driving and
other cell phone use. However, anything that distracts you from the task
of driving is distracted driving, whether or not a cell phone is used.
Distracted driving behaviors that do not involve the use of a cell phone include:
These behaviors are not explicitly labeled as legal in New York state law.
However, they are dangerous and could be considered as reckless driving.
It is still possible for a driver to receive a ticket for exhibiting one
of the listed behaviors while driving.
The Dangers of Distracted Driving
Although cell phone use is the only type of distracted driving that is
explicitly outlawed in the state of New York, all forms of distracted
driving are dangerous. Driving distracted leaves you unable to respond
to other drivers around you. It is one of the top causes of car accidents
Please contact our firm if you have been injured because of a distracted
driver. The lawyers of Gruenberg Kelly Della are available to assist you
with your legal questions concerning negligence and injury.
If you or a loved one was injured in a car accident and you are interested
in speaking with our legal team,
send us a message or call 888.305.6372 for a free consultation with our attorneys.