You can now be charged with a ‘DUI’ for using a phone while driving in Washington state

Washington state drivers using any electronic device while behind the wheel — even when parked at a stoplight — could result in charges akin to a DUI.

A new distracted driving law, referred to as an “E-DUI,” takes effect in the Evergreen State on Sunday, according to KCPQ-TV. The legislation was written in response to a 32 percent increase from 2014 to 2015 in the number of deaths resulting from distracted driving.

“Put the cellphones down, preserve life,” Gov. Jay Inslee (D) said from the steps of the Capitol in Olympia, Washington. “When you are driving with a cellphone, you are a more dangerous driver than if you are driving drunk with a .08 blood alcohol level.”

The governor said that the bill is called “electronic driving while impaired” for a reason.

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