King County, Washington Passes All-Encompassing Distracted Driving Ban

Posted on November 8, 2012

A litany of distracted driving behaviors will soon be against the law in one locale following the passage of an ordinance by the area’s county council.

The area in question is the King County region of Washington, and the council approved the ban unanimously.  What’s surprising about this particular law is how far it goes in trying to cut down on distractions behind the wheel.  Although distracted driving under the ban is only labelled as a secondary offense, meaning that some other breach of the law must occur before an officer pulls a person to the side of the road, just about any action could be considered distracting moving forward.

Applying makeup in the mirror?  Distracting.  Eating a burger from a local drive-thru?  Distracting.  Talking to a passenger and you take your eyes off the road?  Yes, even this common behavior could be designated a distraction under the new law.

Citizens interviewed in a new report seem to be okay with the ban, although some interviewees stated that they though a fine for distraction needs to be even higher than it is.  As it stands now, a violator will have to pay out $124 should they be hit with a citation.  Drivers can expect the law to take effect at the beginning of next year, so in the mean time, behavior should be adjusted accordingly.

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