True or False: Holding your cellphone while driving is not against the law in Massachusetts.
Answer: False. Massachusetts law prohibits the operators of motor vehicles from using any electronic device, including cellphones, unless the device is used in “hands-free” mode.
True or False: Drivers under the age of 18 are not permitted to use any electronic devices while operating the vehicle.
Answer: True. All handheld phone use by drivers under the age of 18 is already banned. The new law applies only to adult drivers.
True or False: Checking your email or Facebook on your cell is okay if you are sitting at a red light.
Answer: False. Handheld use is allowed only if the vehicle is both stationary AND not located on a public travel lane or bicycle lane. It’s not permitted while in traffic waiting at a red light.
True or False: When you’re charged with a crime, the police automatically arrest you.
Answer: False. Many people are arrested when they’re charged with a crime, but not everyone. Many people are summonsed into court, bypassing the police station.
True or False: When the police are called to the scene of an auto accident and an officer cites one of the drivers with Negligent Operation of a Motor Vehicle, the officer’s decision on who was negligent is final and binding on the drivers.
Answer: False. The officer’s decision to issue a citation is simply an accusation. Like all criminal charges, the jury will ultimately decide whether a crime was committed.