California Court Outlaws Using Smartphone Maps While Driving

Don’t count on using your smartphone’s GPS to navigate around California. The state recently made it illegal to check maps on mobile devices while driving, extending its existing ban on texting and “distracted driving.”According to the appellate court’s filing of California v. Spriggs, using navigation apps behind the wheel can be just as distracting as using your phone for any other reason.

“That distraction would be present whether the wireless telephone was being used as a telephone, a GPS navigator, a clock or a device for sending and receiving messages and emails,” the official court document read.

As mobile devices continue to evolve, lawmakers are placing more emphasis on the dangers of distracted driving. Last month West Virginia Legislature Republican Gary G. Howell proposed a bill that would ban Google Glass usage while driving.

“We heard of many crashes caused by texting and driving, mostly involving our youngest drivers,” Howell said to CNET in March. “I see the Google Glass as an extension.”

However, a recent study from the American Journal of Public Health found that such laws show little results when it comes to promoting safety on the road. In states with stronger bans on using technology while driving, fatalities were only reduced by eight percent and rebounded in months following the ban. 

via Wireless

Lisa Eadicicco
Lisa Eadicicco
Lisa has been reporting on all things mobile for since early 2013. When she’s not reviewing gadgets, she’s usually browsing patent databases or interviewing experts to track down the hottest tech trends before they even happen. Lisa holds a B.A. in Journalism from SUNY Purchase and has contributed to The International Business Times, The New York Daily News and Guitar World Magazine.
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  1. Brandon Abell Says:

    Why has nobody who has “reported” on this bothered to *read* the decision? This applied to *handheld* mobile phone use. Not *all* use while driving. Basically they just restated that the state legislature meant what it said it meant and doesn’t want you operating your phone in your hands while driving. Just put it in a dashboard mount and use it from there. Then it’s not “handheld” anymore and doesn’t violate the law. It’s not rocket science.

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