This month the new Hands-Free Law went into effect in Minnesota. We wrote about this a month ago, but decided the day before would be one last good reminder. Here are some quick notes on the law taken from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Website:
“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.”
“You may not hold your phone in your hand. Also, a driver 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.”
“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.”
There are other questions answered on the website, but these statements give a good idea about what the law is prohibiting.
How do I use my phone hands free?
We will have a couple different devices here in our store for people to consider which will make their phones usable hands-free. We will have a phone holder that clips into your car vents, a holder that goes into your cup holder and a wireless Bluetooth speaker that you can use to make voice calls. There are other types of holders and speakers, but we found these ones very useful in our testing, but every car is different some options may not work for you.
If you car already has Bluetooth built in then you have nothing to worry about as far as getting a device to hold your phone, but the law still applies that you cannot be holding it. As for flip phone users, it is going to be very difficult if not impossible for you to make and receive phone calls without holding your phone.
As always, if you have any questions on the law you can visit the Department of Safety website, or give us a call and we can try to answer your questions. If you want to see the products that we have been testing come on down and we can see which one will work with your vehicle.
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Citizen at 831-3455.