On July 1, new laws went into effect for cell phone use while driving in South Dakota. It is now a Class 2 misdemeanor to use a cell phone while driving a car except for the following reasons:

  • Emergency purposes
  • Using a GPS app, but information can’t be entered into the phone while driving
  • Reading or entering a phone number

This means, you are allowed to hold the phone to your ear to talk or talk via hands-free mode; however, except for entering the phone number, all other entry is prohibited.

South Dakota Distracted Driving Laws Get Tougher

There are two other major changes to South Dakota distracted driving laws:

  1. Using a cell phone while driving is now a primary offense. This means, a police officer can now pull over a driver and issue a ticket if they see that driver texting while driving. No more is texting a secondary offense where police had to see the driver break another traffic law in order to pull him over before issuing a ticket for texting.
  2. The new law also bans other cell phone uses, including taking photos, posting to social media, using the Internet, reading emails, or using any type of phone app.

The offense carries a fine of $122.50.