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Texting and Driving

In South Dakota, House Bill 1169 goes into effect July 1, 2020. This new law expands prohibitions on use of a cell phone while driving. While this law may be referred to as a ban on texting and driving, it prohibits many activities that would distract a driver including sending and receiving text messages, reviewing or posting to social media sites, and taking photographs. This includes vehicles stopped at a red light or stop sign. A violation of this law is a Class 2 Misdemeanor. The law also reclassifies use of a cell phone while driving as a primary offense meaning law enforcement can pull you over without having to witness any other violations of the law.

Drivers can still send and receive phone calls as long as a hands-free devise is used or the phone is held up to the driver’s ear. Drivers can also use GPS or navigation devices or applications but cannot manually enter information into to the GPS or navigation device unless the vehicle is legally parked.

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