Hands-free law starts Aug. 1
The hands-free bill was signed by Gov. Tim Walz in April and becomes law on Aug. 1, 2019, banning the use of hand-held cell phones while driving. Here are some quick facts about the new law.
What can I do under the new law?
The new law allows a driver to use their cell phone to make calls, text, listen to music or podcasts and get directions, but only by voice commands or single-touch activation without holding the phone. Remember, hands-free is not necessarily distraction-free.
What can’t I do with my phone under the new law?
You may not hold your phone in your hand. Also, a driver may not use their phone at any time for video calling, video livestreaming, Snapchat, gaming, looking at videos or photos stored on the phone, using non-navigation apps, reading texts and scrolling or typing on the phone.
Can I ever hold my phone?
Yes. Hand-held phone use is allowed to obtain emergency assistance, if there is an immediate threat to life and safety, or when in an authorized emergency vehicle while performing official duties.
Can I use a GPS navigation device?
Yes. GPS and other systems that can only be used for navigation are exempt from the hands-free law. In-car screens and systems are also exempt. In both cases, most of these systems lock when the vehicle is moving.Visit www.handsfreemn.org for more information.