Maine Revised Statutes

§2119. Text messaging while operating motor vehicle; prohibition

1. Definitions.   As used in this section, unless the context otherwise indicates, the following terms have the following meanings.
A. "Cellular telephone" means a device used to access wireless telephone service. [2011, c. 207, §1 (NEW).]
B. "Portable electronic device" means any portable electronic device that is not part of the operating equipment of a motor vehicle, including but not limited to an electronic game, device for sending or receiving e-mail, text messaging device, cellular telephone and computer. [2011, c. 207, §1 (NEW).]
C. "Text messaging" means reading or manually composing electronic communications, including text messages, instant messages and e-mails, using a portable electronic device. "Text messaging" does not include using a global positioning or navigation system. [2011, c. 207, §1 (NEW).]
D. "Operate" means driving a motor vehicle on a public way with the motor running, including while temporarily stationary because of traffic, a traffic light or a stop sign or otherwise stationary. "Operate" does not include operating a motor vehicle with or without the motor running when the operator has pulled the motor vehicle over to the side of, or off, a public way and has halted in a location where the motor vehicle can safely remain stationary. [2013, c. 381, Pt. B, §28 (NEW).]
[ 2013, c. 381, Pt. B, §28 (AMD) .]
2. Prohibition.   A person may not operate a motor vehicle while engaging in text messaging.
[ 2011, c. 207, §1 (NEW) .]
3. Penalties.   The following penalties apply to a violation of this section.
A. A person who violates this section commits a traffic infraction for which a fine of not less than $250 may be adjudged. [2013, c. 188, §1 (NEW).]
B. A person who violates this section after previously having been adjudicated as violating this section within a 3-year period commits a traffic infraction for which a fine of not less than $500 may be adjudged, and the Secretary of State shall suspend the license of that person without right to hearing. The minimum periods of license suspension are:
(1) Thirty days, if the person has 2 adjudications for a violation of this section within a 3-year period;
(2) Sixty days, if the person has 3 adjudications for a violation of this section within a 3-year period; and
(3) Ninety days, if the person has 4 or more adjudications for a violation of this section within a 3-year period.
For the purposes of this paragraph, an adjudication has occurred within a 3-year period if the date of the new conduct is within 3 years of the date of a docket entry of adjudication of a violation of this section. [2013, c. 188, §1 (NEW).]
[ 2013, c. 188, §1 (RPR) .]
SECTION HISTORY
2011, c. 207, §1 (NEW). 2011, c. 654, §7 (AMD). 2013, c. 188, §1 (AMD). 2013, c. 381, Pt. B, §28 (AMD).