Motorists in Minnesota can no longer hold a phone in their hand while driving.
The hands-free cell phone bill became law in the State this month in a bid to reduce fatalities and injuries on Minnesota roads.
“The hands-free law is a powerful example of Minnesotans turning personal tragedy into lifesaving advocacy,” said Governor Walz. “I am proud of the bipartisan effort that went into making this law. Distracted driving has impacted too many families in our state, and this common sense law means more drivers will put down the phone, keep their eyes on the road, and ensure more Minnesotans make it home to their loved ones.”
Penalties for violating the new law start at $50 plus court fees for the first ticket and increase to $275 plus court fees for later tickets.
Minnesota Hands-Free Law At a Glance
- You can’t hold your phone while driving.
- You can place your phone anywhere in the vehicle as long as you are not holding it with your hand. If mounted on the windshield, it must be in the lower part of the windshield, not obstructing your view.
- 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.
- Drivers may not use their phone at any time for video calling, video live-streaming, Snapchat, gaming, looking at video or photos stored on the phone, using non-navigation apps, reading texts and scrolling or typing on the phone.
- GPS devices 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.
- 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.