New California Law Bans Texting While Driving

While he did not sign the bill at the 96th Annual National Safety Congress & Expo in Anaheim, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger gave the big conference's expo a fitting sendoff Wednesday when he signed SB 28 into law. The bill prohibits drivers from using text messaging devices while driving a motor vehicle.

"Building on legislation already helping save lives in California, I am happy to sign this bill because it further encourages safe and responsible driving," said Schwarzenegger. "Banning electronic text messaging while driving will keep drivers' hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road, making our roadways a safer place for all Californians."

The bill -- SB 28, sponsored by Sen. Joe Simitian, a Palo Alto Democrat -- says drivers may not write, send, or read a text-based communication while driving a motor vehicle. It sets a base fine of $20 for a first offense and $50 for each subsequent offense, but the offending driver is not assessed a point for licensing purposes. The new law defines "write, send, or read a text-based communication" as meaning "using an electronic wireless communications device to manually communicate with any person using a text-based communication, including, but not limited to, communications referred to as a text message, instant message, or electronic mail." But it does not include reading, selecting, or entering a telephone number or name in an electronic wireless communications device for the purpose of making or receiving a telephone call, the law states. Emergency services professional using an electronic wireless communications device while operating an authorized emergency vehicle in the course and scope of their duties are exempt.

The existing law to which Schwarzenegger referred was signed in 2006; sponsored by Simitian, it requires motorists to use hands-free devices while talking on mobile phones while driving a motor vehicle.

Download Center

HTML - No Current Item Deck
  • Get the Ultimate Guide to OSHA Recordkeeping

    OSHA’s Form 300A posting deadline is February 1! Are you prepared? To help answer your key recordkeeping questions, IndustrySafe put together this guide with critical compliance information.

  • Steps to Conduct a JSA

    We've put together a comprehensive step-by-step guide to help you perform a job safety analysis (JSA), which includes a pre-built, JSA checklist and template, steps of a JSA, list of potential job hazards, and an overview of hazard control hierarchy.

  • Levels of a Risk Matrix

    Risk matrices come in many different shapes and sizes. Understanding the components of a risk matrix will allow you and your organization to manage risk effectively.

  • Free Safety Management Software Demo

    IndustrySafe Safety Management Software helps organizations to improve safety by providing a comprehensive toolset of software modules to help businesses identify trouble spots; reduce claims, lost days, OSHA fines; and more.

  • Industry Safe
TenCate FR Technology

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - October 2020

    October 2020

    Featuring:

    • FACILITY SECURITY
      EHS Compliance: Make it Personal
    • FOOT PROTECTION
      Choosing the Right Safety Shoe for Your Industry
    • HAND PROTECTION
      A Requirements Checklists for Work Safety Gloves
    • COVID-19 MANAGEMENT
      Contemporary Issues in HSE Management
    View This Issue