Newnan, Ga. - Authorities in Coweta County reported a traffic stop that was originally initiated because a driver was allegedly violating the Hands-Free Georgia Law.
This led to the discovery of over fifteen pounds of marijuana and over $30,000 in cash inside of the vehicle. The driver was arrested on charges of trafficking marijuana, failure to maintain lane, and violation of the Hands-Free Law.
As a Coweta County DUI Lawyer, there are many different offenses here that I could focus on. However, I would like to focus on the violation of the Hands-Free Law. So many drivers in Georgia believe that minor traffic violations are harmless, but this just is not the case. What can start as a minor traffic violation can lead to some very serious harms as well as charges.
Violation of the Hands Free Georgia Law
A violation of the Hands Free Georgia Law is also known as texting while driving in Georgia. The law was modified in 2018 to include stricter standards. Distracted driving or texting while driving is defined in the same statute as always. However, since the Georgia Hands Free Law was enacted, there have been some major changes. These changes include:
- Drivers cannot have a phone in their hand or touching any part of their body while talking on their phone while driving.
- Even with hands-free technology, drivers cannot write, read or send text messages, e-mails, social media content and other internet data while on the road. (Voice to text is allowed)
- Drivers cannot watch videos when they are on the road. (Navigational/GPS videos are allowed)
- Drivers cannot use their phones or electronic devices to record video when they are on the road. (Continuously running dash cams are allowed)
- Drivers may listen to streaming music that does not include videos on the screen of their phone or device while driving but cannot touch their phones while on the road to activate or program any music streaming app. Streaming music that is controlled by and listened through the vehicle's radio is allowed. Drivers who need to touch their phones to activate/program their music streaming apps must do so before getting on the road
- The fine for a first conviction is $50.00 and 1 point assessed against the driver's license. The fine is $100.00 and 2 points for a second conviction and $150.00 and 3 points for three or more conviction. The fines for a 2nd or 3rd offense only apply when date of a 2nd or 3rd conviction takes place within 24 months of the date of the first conviction. First time offenders can have the charge dropped by showing the court they have obtained a device that allows them to talk on a phone with hands-free technology or devices.
Call our offices today if you or a loved one has been charged or cited for a serious traffic offense such as DUI or some other DUI related offense. We can help you with your charges now.