November 08, 2019
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Tickets are adding up for motorists under hands-free law

Linda Coan O'Kresik | BDN
Linda Coan O'Kresik | BDN
Orono police Officer Adam Oko patrols for drivers using cell phones in this Sept. 19, 2019, file photo taken the day the hands-free law went into effect in Maine. "It's better to get a bluetooth phone and put the phone down than getting a ticket," Oko said. Officer Oko issued this driver a warning and informed him of the new law.

Maine law enforcement officers have written up a couple hundred motorists for violating a law that prohibits motorists from using hand-held electronic devices.

The Portland Press Herald reports that 232 tickets have been written since the law went into effect on Sept. 19. Fine and fees are $85 for first-time offenders.

[What you can (and can’t) do under Maine’s new law banning handheld phones while driving]

Legislative analysts predicted that in the first full fiscal year that ends June 30, 2021, police could write up to 5,500 citations, or about 458 tickets per month.

Officers are allowed to issue a ticket if they see a phone in the hand of a motorist. Drivers are permitted to use hands-free calling systems or aftermarket Bluetooth devices to make and receive calls hands-free.

 



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