$337 Fine Because Passenger Was Using FaceTime

This seems extreme and more likely a revenue raising scheme.



  • -1

    Reckon its valid - of course the passenger is going to turn the screen to face the driver and say hello. I know its silly but Just because we don’t know all the road rules about phones and screens it doesn’t make it any less the law.

  • +18


    Journalism at its finest

    • +10

      From their terms and conditions -

      News does not warrant the accuracy of the content which you access through this Site

  • +3

    Would that mean you could be fined for the front seat passenger being on their phone scrolling at ANY page or site?

    • depends on the interpretation of the terms TV and VDU

  • +7

    Of Course Sheree - the one with the instagram/social media styled puffed lips, will put her side of the story, rather than the full story of why.

    If for example the passenger had been holding the screen up so the driver could watch the video while "driving".

    Of course we know all those who ever got fined for driving using a mobile phone, were really scratching their ears when the cop spotted them.

    Just like those damn display tables at Myer where things get caught in your jacket pockets as you walk by.

    Social media types are plain honest. You know because they recommend products which they have stringently tested before you buy them.

  • +6

    Maybe the police officer had footage showing the driver was involved in the FaceTime call…?
    We don't know all the details, as it could be in the interest of the driver to not disclose them.

    However, if it really was a passenger and there was no involvement with the driver, then it is not fair, just, or legal. And either the law needs to be amended, or the fine needs to be reversed.

  • +38

    Passenger on phone with visuals - likely to turn head and cause collision - fined.

    LED screen billboards which has the sole purpose of getting drivers to look - that's fine.

    • +4

      +1 ..
      Revenue raising at its finest

    • -9

      LED billboards are not typically on the passenger seat causing the driver to move their head to view the screen.

    • +16

      Some of those LED billboards are so ridiculously bright at night that it's got to be a danger…

      • +3

        those "Drive safe / Take a rest" are so annoying

        • +3

          Ugliest crap on some otherwise beautiful roads to distract the driver with a reminder to not be distracted.

  • The same fine can be used for having DVD players or screens in the car that are a distraction to other drivers.

  • +2

    It's obviously a crack down on people using Snapchat etc to film themselves and their drivers following the terrible crash involving Snapchat crash driver Shania McNeill. They were killed in a head-on collision moments after being filmed.

      • +9

        That's an absolutely horrible thing to say. No-one deserves to die in a road crash, regardless of the circumstances. Calling it "fantastic" that she died tells more about you as a human than them. Shame on you

        • +4

          Nope, I'd rather risk-takers take their own lives as opposed to killing my loved ones and getting a slap on the wrist. I respect my loved ones much more than idiots on the roads.

          • +5

            @KaptnKaos: I agree with everything you say here but this statement is a very long way from your original vitriol.

  • extreme? Have you seen the snapchat video like 2 months ago, a girl driver was responding to her friend's recording, and then she was horrified and then she was dead?

    You can blame that she was too tired at that time, but if she was not distracted by her passenger from focusing on the road, she might survive.

    • +4

      If we started making/enforcing policies because of isolated incidents, we'd have some pretty whacky laws.

      The unfortunate/disturbing fact is drivers are almost certain to be distracted by a screen/advertisement inside or outside the car whilst they are driving. The incidence of crashes relating to that distraction represents an iota of a percentage.

      Last week, I had a particularly head-bangy playlist firing in the car and I nearly missed my turning so I did something that would have resulted in a collision if the other driver also happened to be absent minded and went out of their way to do something dangerous (like accelerate since it look like his path is clear on the exit ramp). We could easily legislate music that's legal in cars, or ban acceleration into exit ramps.

      I'm glad we don't.

      • +5

        The process of just banning everything does nothing but take away individual privileges.

        It's long been said that every time something is made that is idiot-proof, nature just builds a better idiot.

  • So, can or cannot the front seat passenger play mobile phone by him or herself?

    • Yes, as long as the screen is not visible to the driver of the vehicle.

  • So if you are a NSW driver and a passenger next to you is using a phone/tablet/laptop, then the driver could be fined under offence code 82906-

    Drive vehicle with TV/VDU image likely to distract"

    The key word here is "likely", implying in the opinion of the officer issuing the ticket. My advice is, if your front seat passenger pulls out TV/VDU device, pull over and chuck them in the back seat, because most "likely" you are committing an offence.

    It also appears, and it can be argued that, the inbuilt factory VDU's that are smack down in the middle of the dash in direct sight of the driver and common in new vehicles nowdays are illegal, but somehow managed to pass ADR's. Go figure.

  • I don't know the full circumstances of this case, but it wouldn't surprise me if policing has gone too far.
    I see similarities in our new Kia Sorento not allowing navigator directions to be entered unless the vehicle is in Park. It seems to me there are many other features that need to be removed if we're going to remove everything that could possible distract a driver.

  • +1

    This is absurd. Maybe later we can't wear pants while driving because when itchy down there pants can distract us from scratching certain areas.