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Starting June 1, 2018, Rhode Island will institute new laws banning drivers from using their cell phones to make calls while operating a motor vehicle. These new measures are in addition to the existing laws regarding texting while driving. Distracted driving laws are becoming increasingly relevant today due to the public’s widespread reliance on cell phones for constant communication, so make sure you choose an attorney who is comfortable navigating all aspects of Rhode Island law, both new and old.

Attorney Stephen R. Archambault is well-versed on Rhode Island’s distracted driving legislation and can help you better understand your rights. If you have received a citation for distracted driving, Attorney Archambault will explain your available options to you and help you earn a favorable outcome from your violation.

Texting While Driving

Texting while driving has been officially outlawed by the state of Rhode Island under RIGL § 31-22-30. Should you receive a citation for texting while driving, the penalties enacted can include both a fine and a driver’s license suspension. The amount of the fine and length of license suspension increases with each subsequent offense and can reach up to $250 and a six-month license suspension with the third violation.

According to Rhode Island law, exceptions can be made for the use of GPS devices or applications, contacting emergency services, or if the vehicle is not in motion and removed from the flow of traffic. Attorney Archambault knows how the sanctions in place under these provisions function and can help you understand your options. If you rely on your ability to operate a motor vehicle for your employment, Attorney Archambault can fight to help you retain your license after receiving a texting while driving citation.

Talking on the Phone While Driving

New laws regarding making phone calls while driving take effect this summer, putting provisions in place that prohibit drivers from making non-hands-free phone calls while operating a motor vehicle. Under RIGL § 31-22-31, effective on June 1, drivers will no longer be able to hold a cell phone to their ear while driving. While these new laws are designed to create safer roads, they can cause headaches for those who are required to be on their cell phones to attend to their jobs or other responsibilities.

If you receive a violation for talking on the phone while driving, Attorney Archambault can help you navigate these new laws and understand your rights. First-time violators can have their penalty fines suspended with the purchase of a hands-free device following their citation but prior to the imposition of their fine. Attorney Archambault will help you avoid paying a fine for your first-time offense and explain the new laws in detail, ensuring you are equipped to prevent citations going forward.

Distracted Driving Offenses for Minors and School Bus Drivers

Distracted driving is an unsafe activity that can endanger not only the driver but also passengers and other citizens present on the road. Operating a motor vehicle places weight on drivers to act responsibly and factor the safety of their passengers and other drivers into their decision-making. For this reason, the state of Rhode Island has banned the use of personal wireless communication devices by both minors and school bus drivers while operating a motor vehicle.

Under RIGL § 31-22-11.8, school bus drivers can face fines of up to $200 for repeat violations. This violation will also be considered evidence of negligence if any civil action arises. Under RIGL § 31-22-11.9, minors caught using a cell phone while operating a motor vehicle can ultimately lose their driver’s license until they reach the age of 18, in addition to fines of up to $250 for repeat violations.

Expert Legalese at Archambault Law Offices, Inc.

The laws in place regarding distracted driving are constantly expanding. When it comes to knowing your rights, make sure you have the best attorney on your side. Call Archambault Law today at 401-300-0925 to schedule your consultation with Attorney Archambault.