Is it Legal to Text and Drive in Colorado?
Is it legal to text and drive in Colorado may seem like a silly question, but I have to put it out there.
It seems there is some confusion out there about what is legal or not when it comes to cell phones and automobiles - and the answer seems to be yes AND no.
The fact is, earlier this year the Colorado legislature was considering a bill that would have made it to use your cellphone while drive unless it was hands-free. That bill failed.
The law already makes it illegal for anyone under the age of 18 to use a cell phone while driving, regardless of whether it's talking or texting. The Senate bill would have extended that law to apply to drivers of all ages and all electronic mobile devices.
So, as it stands right now, if you are over 18 you can talk on your cell phone while driving, even if it's not hands-free. Texting is a little different story.
According to DrivingLaws.org, it is illegal for all drivers to text or message while driving. However, apparently you can only be ticketed if that violation causes you to drive in a "careless and imprudent" manner. A friend recently told me they had been stopped twice for using their cell phone, but wasn't ticketed. Now I think I understand why.
It's kind of like the seatbelt law in Colorado which says you can't be pulled over for not wearing a seatbelt, but if you are stopped for a violation and not wearing a seatbelt it will cost you at least an additional $55. You can be stopped for texting, but not ticketed unless you are driving carelessly. A texting violation could cost you $300, but if you're in an accident that causes injury or death the fine could be as much as $1000 and you could end up in jail.
However, in both cases, why would you want to risk injury, death, jail, or fine by not wearing your seatbelt or by choosing to text and drive? There is no way it's worth the risk. Don't do it.
Just for the record, texting violations do not apply only to literal text messages. It applies to any form of type-written communication on your phone, including the ever-popular Instant Messenger.
If you are guilty of texting while you drive, I implore you to stop doing it before it's too late. Your life and the life of others are at stake.