With the school year and the high school sports season upon us, I find myself out on the roads much more traveling to games across southern Minnesota. And, wow, everyone is driving fast, while talking on their phones and tailgating the car in front of them. I believe some of these things are illegal in Minnesota. (NOTE: The car pictured here was not breaking any laws. It simply caught my eye.)

STILL A HANDS-FREE STATE

Are you seeing more and more people on their phone while behind the wheel? The hands-free law went into effect August 1, 2019.

Indications from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety website say you can only use your phone "by voice commands or single-touch activation without holding the phone." They go so far as to suggest "turning off your phone and placing it in your purse/bag, truck, center console or glove box. That way it's out of sight, out of mind."

SPEEDING IS DEFINITELY STILL AGAINST THE LAW

The rash of drivers exceeding 100 miles per hour continues...

The number of vehicles I see speeding and tailgating on the freeway, and weaving in and out of traffic, is staggering. It leaves me cringing quite often. The department's home page has a running total of the number of Minnesotans killed on roadways this year. The total was 354, as of September 27. Not all are speed-related tragedies.

YIELD TO PEDESTRIANS IN A CROSSWALK

I will say that most drivers DO obey this law. I am out running quite a bit and find that most drivers yield at crosswalks. The Department of Public Safety says, "Drivers must stop for crossing pedestrians at marked crosswalks and at all intersections without crosswalks or stop lights." Likewise, "Pedestrians must obey traffic signs and signals at all intersections that have them."

Next week's topic...how to properly navigate a roundabout!

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