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What are Maryland’s distracted driving laws?

With the rise of technology available at our fingertips, distracted driving accidents have also increased. Far too many drivers rely on handheld technology or have other distractions pulling at their attention when they are on the road. This can lead to serious injuries.

Maryland has passed several laws to curb the rate of distracted driving accidents. If you have not brushed up on our state’s distracted driving rules lately, then take a moment to take a look at them. It just might save a life.

Distracted driving in Maryland: what to know

These are our state’s rules when it comes to distracted driving:

  • Using handheld devices: The state forbids all handheld devices while driving. This includes cell phones, tablets, music players and other handheld technology.
  • Texting: The handheld ban extends to texting on any sort of handheld device. This extends to entering a phone number, entering navigation information and any other form of typing.
  • Talking on the phone: Drivers may use Bluetooth technology or other hands-free technology to speak on the phone while driving. It is against the law, though, to hold a device in your hands and speak into it.

The only exceptions to these laws is when it is necessary to use a handheld device to contact the police, an ambulance or other authorities to report an emergency.

What are the penalties for distracted driving?

Maryland is one of the stricter states when it comes to distracted driving regulations. If caught, a driver could face penalties such as:

  • License suspension or revocation
  • Mandatory driver education classes
  • Community service
  • Probation
  • A fine of up to $5,000
  • Jail time

Sadly, the criminal penalties for distracted driving do not include compensation for the victims or their surviving family members. But another way to penalize distracted drivers is to file a civil lawsuit seeking damages for medical bills, lost wages and other expenses.