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It is proposed to change the definition of the ban on using the phone while driving: what would be different? & More Latest News Here

 

Disputes also moved to the courts

Article 13 of the currently valid version of the Law on Road Traffic Safety indicates that: “Drivers of motor vehicles, tractors, self-propelled machines are prohibited from using mobile communication devices if they are used by hand, except in cases when the engine of a stationary motor vehicle is turned off.”

Analysis of the proposed law amendment project, which is published here it is noticeable that article 13 is proposed to be changed by wording it as follows: “During the driving of the vehicle, the driver must avoid any actions that are not related to driving the vehicle and controlling its equipment, which interfere with safe driving.” While the vehicle is moving, the driver is prohibited from using mobile communication devices if they are used by hand.”

In the proposed amendment to the law, there is no longer a line about the need to turn off the vehicle’s engine. It is the issue of turning off the engine that has been considered many times and in courts, offenders disagreed with the penalty, citing the fact that the automatic “Start/Stop” system operating in the car turns off the engine by itself.

And although the appellants claimed that they were right, the court has repeatedly clarified that even if the engine is automatically turned off, for example, when standing in a traffic jam or at a traffic light, the driver is still participating in traffic and does not have the right to pick up the phone.

Expect more clarity and less interpretation

Vytautas Grašys, head of the Lithuanian Traffic Police Service, who agreed to comment on this proposed change, says that it would bring more clarity. The concept of an engine off would no longer be guided by the fact that the car is moving at the time. However, Vytautas Grashys reminds that stopping at a traffic light when the car is physically stationary does not mean that you can grab the phone at that time.

“I think the proposed wording is clearer than the one used now.” Basically, if you are standing at a traffic light, movement, traffic is happening in any case. There were also precedents in the courts for such cases due to the engine being turned off.

We believe that now the wording will be much clearer, which should further define the understanding of the participants that in any case you cannot use your phone while moving or participating in traffic. It doesn’t matter if the engine is off or not. And if you stop to use your mobile phone in those places where you can stop safely, you would no longer have to turn off the engine,” said Vytautas Grashys, head of LKPT.

Cars change, laws change too

15 minutes applied to the Ministry of the Interior for a comment on the proposed amendments to this law. The representatives of its communication department suggested to contact the Ministry of Transport in this matter. The latter referred back to the Ministry of the Interior, so it was not possible to hear the broader reasons for this proposed change from the initiators of the project.

In the explanatory note accompanying the proposed amendment project, the reasons are formulated as follows:

“It is proposed to clarify the provisions of Article 13, paragraph 13 of SEAKĮ, related to the ban on using mobile communication devices. It should be noted that on the roads of the Republic of Lithuania there is an increase in the number of electric cars with extremely quiet electric motors, as well as cars equipped with automatic Start / Stop system, therefore, in practice, problematic situations will increasingly be encountered when it is unclear whether the engine of a motor vehicle has been switched on or off. Also, in practice, it is less important whether the engine is on or off, and more important that the driver ensures that the vehicle does not start moving before using mobile devices.

Taking this into account, in paragraph 13 of Article 13 of SEAKĮ it is proposed to determine that the driver is prohibited from using mobile communication devices while the vehicle is moving, if they are used by hand. Such wording will basically correspond to the Road Traffic Convention, signed in 1968. November 8 In Vienna (with the latest amendments), the provisions of Article 8, paragraph 6″.

Violators are currently subject to a fine of 60 to 90 euros for using mobile communication devices, and for a repeated violation, the right to drive may be revoked for a period of 1 to 3 months. In this case, the violator would also have to attend an additional one-day course for drivers who have committed an offense.

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The Article Is In Lithuanian🡽

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