Utah Gov. Gary Herbert last week signed into law a bill amending state traffic codes to prohibit use of a handheld wireless electronics device – including a cell phone – to compose, send or read a written communication while driving.
The Utah House and Senate passed the legislation in March.
Utah already prohibited texting while driving. But under the new law, drivers also cannot legally read or send instant messages or e-mail, dial phone numbers, access the Internet, view or record videos, or enter data on a handheld wireless device while they’re operating a moving vehicle.
However, drivers are still permitted to operate handheld phones or devices for voice communication, to view a GPS or navigation system, or to report an emergency or crime to authorities.
Hands-free or voice-command operation of a wireless device is not subject to the law’s restrictions. Also, on-duty emergency service and law enforcement personnel are exempt.