A new bill would like to make it easier for law enforcement to check if you were using your phone while driving.
Nevada is currently a hands-free state, which means that drivers are prohibited from using handheld cell phones while driving. However, this law has not prevented all phone use by drivers.
Assembly Bill 200 was introduced the Nevada Legislature by Assemblywoman Michelle Gorelow. The bill would allow a police officer at the scene of a car accident to request access to the drivers’ phones of any vehicle involved in the crash if the officer has reasonable and probable grounds to believe that the driver was using the cell phone while operating the vehicle that crashed at or near the time of the crash.
The bill would allow the police officer to use an “investigative technology device” on the handheld wireless communications device to determine whether the device was being used for handheld or manual access to communications during a specific time period.
If you refuse to hand over your phone, your driver’s license could get taken away.
Assemblywoman Gorelow is a Democrat who represents Clark County. Gorelow has said that the legislation’s intent is to allow the field testing of a driver’s cell phone in crashes with serious injury or death.
Assemblyman Tom Roberts has acknowledged that distracted driving is a huge problem in Nevada, but sees legal challenges with the legislation. Roberts is a former Las Vegas Metro police officer and said that he believes that people have an expectation of phone privacy.
Some lawmakers and citizens have expressed concern that this bill would violate the Fourth Amendment.
“I respect our police department, I love what they do,” Robert McDermitt, a concerned driver, told KLAS, “But I don’t think they should be able to go that far and invade privacy.”
The bill is currently before the Assembly Judiciary.
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If you have been in a car accident and you suspect that the responsible driver was using their cell phone at the time of the crash, you should speak to an experienced Personal Injury Attorney. Contact Anthem Injury Lawyers today to set up a Free Consultation at (702) 850-0202.