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Hands Free Law Goes into Effect in California and Washington
By: Raoul Railey

Hands Free Law Goes into Effect in California and Washington

Today was the first day in which people driving in California and Washington could not use their cell phones anymore, if they were not equipped with a hands free device. The two states join New York, Connecticut, New Jersey and Washington, D.C., where similar laws have already been adopted.

The fine a person will pay if he is caught using his hands while talking to a phone is $20 if this is the first time it happened. If the driver is persistent in breaking this new law, he will have to dig up $50. There is no fine that a person must pay if he sends text messages with his phone, but looking at how things go, this won’t stay for long. The law has been adopted in California in late 2006, but it wasn’t until today that it went into effect.

If this law might be bad news for drivers, it surely makes producers and retailers of hands free products smile. The situation provides enormous business opportunities, and the retailers were there to take advantage of this. During the last period of time, more and more ads that tried to sell drivers the devices that will help them not paying the fines were seen.

And talking about these devices, there are a few things that one should know about them before deciding which one to buy. First of all, there is the price. Bluetooth headsets range from $10 to $150, but the midrange is located between $20 and $30. A cheaper solution would be to buy a wired headset, which goes as low as $4.

Other means of complying with the law are purchasing a device that will stop the radio or CD from playing when a call is made or received and put it on the speakers of the sound system of the car, or buying and installing a GPS system that can be used as a speaker for the phone.