New Jersey Bill Would Ban GPS Use While Driving

Gps-in-car In March 2008, New Jersey joined the growing number of states to enact hand-held cell phone bans for drivers. Now, a Jersey City assemblyman wants to add the use of GPS devices to that ban.

Democrat L. Harvey Smith has introduced a bill that would fine drivers caught manually operating a GPS unit while driving, with an exception for voice-activated models. Smith’s bill proposes fining drivers up to $100 for the offense.

GPS instruction manuals warn against programming while driving, but like talking on a cell phone in the car, sometimes it just happens. While it’s probably not a good idea, making it illegal seems like a bit of a stretch.

After all, searching through the channels on satellite radio or changing the song on an MP3 player can also be distracting, but legislating people’s behavior behind the wheel can only go so far. Realistically, looking out the window at a nice piece of scenery can be a major distraction, but no one’s proposing an “Eyeballs on the Road” law. At some point, people’s common sense and judgment will just have to be enough.

Bill Targets Drivers’ Use of GPS Devices (



It SHOULD be common sense... but how many of us have seen someone swerving or speeding (usually both) as they talk on the phone, check email, or program their GPS or Radio? Yes people will do it... but some don't see the issue as long as it's legal. This bill is symbolic but necessary.


Yes, it is easier to legislate rules than to teach people how live as free people.


these liberals just love to fight darwin's law. hell, they should outlaw driving...then we'd all be safe!

Good luck enforcing this one.


Yeah unless the cop is riding with you I doubt he will know you are using it. This is just stupid. They might as well say you can't change the radio station either while driving.


I just posted this message from my hand-held device while driving in NJ. Hey cops, come and get me!
You get the idea...


Trying to remember all of these laws while driving will be more distracting than using any device!


I agree with you on Darwin's Law, but the issue is that innocent people get hurt, not the knuckleheads who cause the issue. There are at least two situations in my life (both before mobile phones) where someone I know was almost killed because the other driver was distracted. One: a friend was waiting for the traffic to clear while making a left had turn (blinker on) when a driver, plowed into the back of him while he was adjusting his radio. Two: the driver crossed the center divider while lighting a cig and struck a car head on at 60 mph.

Its not about enforcement, its about communication. Telling people that it's wrong and it's not tolerated. If we invested more time in the training and education of drivers we might not have the issue.

This can be enforced: implement a stationary camera that takes a picture of the driver and the car, should be pretty easy to see who's not paying attention while driving.


Yet another showing of governments trying to run everybodies lives. People these days just have no common sense anymore, and are just so happy to let somebody else step in and run things for them, might as well start developing Borg technology, that'll make things so much easier. Anyway I can't tell you how many times I've had to dodge people who were either on cell phones or whatever other devices they were using.

Ben Miner

How would anybody be able to prove a driver was operating a GPS as opposed to changing the radio station or just wiping a smudge off their dash?

Dave Wuss

They wouldn't be able to tell however a certain segment of the population is unable to think on their own so they want every possible law on how to live their lives. As Cody posted, if the Libs (to me they are the Far Left Wingers of my Party) had their way driving would be outlawed.


playing devils advocate one must view all side and make good decisions on which side should take after hearing all the evdience... therefore I would have to say that it is an obsolite banning of GPS's because present cars have them in place so your going to have to pull over every car that has a built in GPS btw the only thing NJ has is porkroll and the shore i knw i live here

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