Using hand-held
wireless phones
while driving is
now illegal in
New York State
Courtesy of...

William Scarborough


Dear Friend,

Wireless phone usage has exploded in recent years, with more than 80 million people using them in the U.S.

Wireless phone use has many benefits, but there is a growing concern about driving while using wireless phones.

In fact, it is now illegal in New York State to drive while talking or listening on a hand-held wireless phone.

This flyer focuses on the new law and potential dangers of using car phones while driving.

If you have any comments or questions, feel free to contact my office.

William Scarborough
Member of Assembly

114-52A Merrick Boulevard
St. Albans, New York 11434
(718) 657-5312

Room 602 LOB
Albany, New York 12248
(518) 455-4451


Wireless Phones & Safety

Motor vehicle collisions are a leading cause of death in North America, accounting for the single most frequent cause of death among children and young adults and accounting for one fatality every 10 minutes. During an average year, about 1 person in 50 will be involved in a motor vehicle collision; one percent of them will die, 10 percent will be hospitalized and 25 percent will be temporarily disabled.

Wireless phones can be an impor-tant safety feature in motor vehicles today. The popularity of wireless phones has soared in recent years, with an estimated 80 million Americans using them cur-rently. If you or someone else needs assistance while on the road, wireless phones can be very helpful. Wireless phones have been a valuable tool in the faster reporting of motor vehicle collisions, allowing rescuers to save people who otherwise may have died.

However, using a wireless phone while driving can be distracting, which could impair the performance of a driver and increase the possibility of a crash.

Driving While Talking On Hand-Held Phones Banned

Driving while talking or listening on a hand-held wireless telephone is now illegal in New York State. The new law:

• bans the use of wireless phones while driving, unless the phone is used with a hands-free device or to make an emergency call; and

• considers violations as traffic infractions, punishable by fines up to $100;

An estimated 284,000 distracted drivers are involved in serious crashes each year, according to studies done by the University of North Carolina’s Highway Safety Research Center. It is anticipated that this new law will save lives by keeping drivers more focused on the road.

Did You Know?

  • The number of people being killed in phone-related motor vehicle crashes continues to increase, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
  • New York State is the first state in the nation to ban driving while using hand-held wireless phones. About 35 other states are considering similar laws.
  • Using hand-held wireless phones has been proven to cause significant increases in driver response times -- thereby increasing the potential for crashes.