New laws aim at safer roadways | January 2, 2009 | Danville Express | |

Danville Express

Newsfront - January 2, 2009

New laws aim at safer roadways

With a new year on the horizon, the California Highway Patrol wants to remind motorists of a handful of new laws, passed by the Legislature and signed by Gov. Schwarzenegger, that go into effect in 2009.

"The overall safety of the motoring public is our primary concern," said CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow. "Not only will these new laws enhance a motorist's safety, many of them are a step toward ridding the roadways of drunk drivers and the tragedy they cause."

High tech devices will be more closely supervised as laws now in effect make it illegal to be engaging in texting, e-mail or similar activities while driving. Also GPS devices must now be mounted on car dashes only in specific locations, in order to minimize their effect on the deployment of airbags.

A number of new laws designed to stiffen the state's DUI laws are now on the books: Drivers on probation for a DUI conviction are no longer allowed to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol level of .01 or above. In addition, drivers with a blood alcohol level of .15 or higher will be issued ignition interlock devices to keep them from driving under the influence; the device installed in a vehicle requires the driver to perform a breath test before the vehicle will start.

A more complete list of the new laws can be found at

--Geoff Gillette