RENO, NV - The Washoe County Sheriff's Office reports that 150 warnings (verbal and written combined) have been issued since October 1 enforcement began to drivers using a cellular telephone while driving.
Bill number SB 140 was passed by the 2011 Nevada Legislature and enforcement began October 1 of this year. A driver may talk on a phone using a hands-free device only. It is warnings only for violating this law until January 1, 2012, then fines will be issued.
The fines are $50 for the first offense in seven years, $100 for the second and $250 for the third and subsequent offenses. Fines are subject to doubling if the offense occurs in a work zone.
Exceptions to this law include:
•Any person reporting a medical emergency, a safety hazard or criminal activity.
•Drivers using a voice-operated navigation system affixed to the vehicle or those riding in autonomous vehicles.
•Drivers using citizen band or other two-way radios that require a license and have a separate, handheld microphone.
•Law enforcement officers, firefighters or emergency medical personnel acting within the scope of their employment.
•Utility workers responding to an outage or emergency and using devices provided by the company.
•Amateur radio operators providing communications services during an emergency or disaster.
The warnings issued by the Sheriff's Office does not reflect the number of motorists who continue to drive distracted. The Sheriff's Office urges all motorists to eliminate distractions and keep focused on the roadway.