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S.B. 98 Enrolled

             1     

AMENDMENTS TO PROHIBITION ON USING A HANDHELD

             2     
WIRELESS COMMUNICATION DEVICE WHILE OPERATING

             3     
A VEHICLE

             4     
2012 GENERAL SESSION

             5     
STATE OF UTAH

             6     
Chief Sponsor: Lyle W. Hillyard

             7     
House Sponsor: Richard A. Greenwood

             8     
             9      LONG TITLE
             10      General Description:
             11          This bill modifies the Traffic Code and the Utah Criminal Code by amending
             12      provisions relating to the prohibition of using a wireless communication device while
             13      operating a moving motor vehicle.
             14      Highlighted Provisions:
             15          This bill:
             16          .    amends definitions;
             17          .    provides that a person may not use a handheld wireless communication device while
             18      operating a moving motor vehicle on a highway in this state to:
             19              .    text message;
             20              .    manually communicate through an electronic mail system;
             21              .    manually enter data into a handheld wireless communication device;
             22              .    send data, read text, or view images on a handheld wireless communication
             23      device; or
             24              .    manipulate an application from a handheld wireless communication device;
             25          .    provides that a person is not prohibited from using a handheld wireless
             26      communication device while operating a moving motor vehicle:
             27              .    when making or receiving a telephone call;
             28              .    when using a handheld wireless communication device for global positioning or
             29      navigation services; or


             30              .    to operate a hands-free or voice operated technology or to operate a system that
             31      is physically or electronically integrated into the motor vehicle;
             32          .    provides that a person is guilty of automobile homicide involving a handheld
             33      wireless communication device if the person uses a handheld wireless
             34      communication device for certain purposes while operating a moving motor vehicle
             35      in a negligent or criminally negligent manner and causes the death of another
             36      person; and
             37          .    makes technical changes.
             38      Money Appropriated in this Bill:
             39          None
             40      Other Special Clauses:
             41          None
             42      Utah Code Sections Affected:
             43      AMENDS:
             44          41-6a-1716, as enacted by Laws of Utah 2009, Chapter 291
             45          76-5-207.5, as enacted by Laws of Utah 2009, Chapter 291
             46     
             47      Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
             48          Section 1. Section 41-6a-1716 is amended to read:
             49           41-6a-1716. Prohibition on using a handheld wireless communication device
             50      while operating a moving motor vehicle -- Exceptions -- Penalties.
             51          (1) As used in this section:
             52          (a) (i) "Handheld wireless communication device" means a handheld device used for
             53      the transfer of information without the use of electrical conductors or wires.
             54          (ii) "Handheld wireless communication device" includes a:
             55          (A) wireless telephone;
             56          (B) personal digital assistant;
             57          (C) pager; or


             58          (D) text messaging device.
             59          (b) (i) "Text [messaging" has the same meaning as defined in Section 76-4-401 .]
             60      message" means to manually communicate in the form of electronic text or one or more
             61      electronic images sent by the actor from a handheld wireless communication device to another
             62      person's handheld wireless communication device or computer by addressing the
             63      communication to the person's telephone number.
             64          (ii) "Text message" includes manually composing a communication in the form of
             65      electronic text or an electronic image by the actor even if the electronic text or image has not
             66      been sent to another person.
             67          (2) Except as provided in Subsection (3), a person may not use a handheld wireless
             68      communication device [for text messaging or electronic mail communication] while operating
             69      a moving motor vehicle on a highway in this state[.] to:
             70          (a) text message;
             71          (b) manually communicate through an electronic mail system;
             72          (c) manually enter data into a handheld wireless communication device;
             73          (d) send data, read text, or view images on a handheld wireless communication device;
             74      or
             75          (e) manipulate an application from a handheld wireless communication device.
             76          (3) Subsection (2) does not prohibit a person from using a handheld wireless
             77      communication device while operating a moving motor vehicle:
             78          (a) when making or receiving a telephone call;
             79          (b) when using a handheld wireless communication device for global positioning or
             80      navigation services;
             81          [(a)] (c) during a medical emergency;
             82          [(b)] (d) when reporting a safety hazard or requesting assistance relating to a safety
             83      hazard;
             84          [(c)] (e) when reporting criminal activity or requesting assistance relating to a criminal
             85      activity;


             86          [(d)] (f) when providing roadside or medical assistance; [or]
             87          [(e)] (g) when used by a law enforcement officer or emergency service personnel acting
             88      within the course and scope of the law enforcement officer's or emergency service personnel's
             89      employment[.]; or
             90          (h) to operate:
             91          (i) hands-free or voice operated technology; or
             92          (ii) a system that is physically or electronically integrated into the motor vehicle.
             93          (4) A person convicted of a violation of this section is guilty of a:
             94          (a) class C misdemeanor; or
             95          (b) class B misdemeanor if the person:
             96          (i) has also inflicted serious bodily injury upon another as a proximate result of using a
             97      handheld wireless communication device for text messaging or electronic mail communication
             98      while operating a moving motor vehicle on a highway in this state; or
             99          (ii) has a prior conviction under this section, that is within three years of:
             100          (A) the current conviction under this section; or
             101          (B) the commission of the offense upon which the current conviction is based.
             102          Section 2. Section 76-5-207.5 is amended to read:
             103           76-5-207.5. Automobile homicide involving using a handheld wireless
             104      communication device while driving.
             105          (1) As used in this section:
             106          (a) "Criminally negligent" means criminal negligence as defined by Subsection
             107      76-2-103 (4).
             108          [(a)] (b) "Handheld wireless communication device" has the same meaning as defined
             109      in Section 41-6a-1716 .
             110          [(b)] (c) "Motor vehicle" means any self-propelled vehicle and includes any
             111      automobile, truck, van, motorcycle, train, engine, watercraft, or aircraft.
             112          [(c) "Text messaging" has the same meaning as defined in Section 76-4-401 .]
             113          [(2) (a) As used in this Subsection (2), "negligent"]


             114          (d) "Negligent" means simple negligence, the failure to exercise that degree of care that
             115      reasonable and prudent persons exercise under like or similar circumstances.
             116          [(b)] (2) Criminal homicide is automobile homicide, a third degree felony, if the person
             117      operates a moving motor vehicle in a negligent manner:
             118          [(i)] (a) while using a handheld wireless communication device [for text messaging or
             119      electronic mail communication] in violation of Section 41-6a-1716 ; and
             120          [(ii)] (b) causing the death of another person.
             121          [(3) (a) As used in this Subsection (3), "criminally negligent" means criminal
             122      negligence as defined by Subsection 76-2-103 (4).]
             123          [(b)] (3) Criminal homicide is automobile homicide, a second degree felony, if the
             124      person operates a moving motor vehicle in a criminally negligent manner:
             125          [(i)] (a) while using a handheld wireless communication device [for text messaging or
             126      electronic mail communication] in violation of Section 41-6a-1716 ; and
             127          [(ii)] (b) causing the death of another person.


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