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August 19, 2019

Demerit Point Increase For NSW Phone Use While Driving

From the 17th of September 2018, the NSW government has changed the penalties for mobile phone usage while driving.

If you’re not aware of this yet, the main change is the increased penalty of 4 demerit points to 5 demerit points.

But with all the new wireless tech and hands-free operation, what is considered ‘using your phone’?

Well, that’s becoming more difficult to define. But we can run down what is allowed when driving and what isn’t.

What phone usage is allowed?

According to the NSW Centre for Road Safety, under specific circumstances you are allowed to take and make phone calls, play music, and use driver aids.

The circumstances which this is permitted must include:

✓ A fully licenced driver

✓ The phone is secured to the vehicle using a phone mount

✓ Views are not obstructed by your phone

✓ No touching of the phone is required

But with newer technology like Siri, Google assistant, and Alexa — some of these functions can be used without a phone cradle. For example, your phone could be in your bag and you’d still be able to take phone calls and play music.

Note: If you are not a full licenced driver, meaning you’re on your learners or P’s, you are not able to use your mobile phone at all.

Learners✗ ZERO phone usage
Red P’s and Green P’s (P1 & P2)✗ ZERO phone usage
Fully Licenced✓ Usage permitted if circumstances are met

What phone usage is NOT allowed?

Apart from the stated above phone usage, including the playing of music, use of driver aids, and taking phone calls…

No other phone actions are permitted.

This means:

✗ No emailing

✗ No texting

✗ No photos or videos

✗ No social media

✗ No handling of phones

While these may seem like very strict laws, it is for the safety of every living creature on the road. The passengers in your car, the animals on the road, and of course — your safety.

Do you need legal assistance for any road or driving related cases?

Get in touch with our team today.

Call us at 0411 384 439

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