This post was most recently updated on December 20th, 2019
Nowadays, electronic instruments have become popular in people’s daily life. In addition to various electronic devices such as televisions and computers, the most common is undoubtedly mobile phones. Modern people almost always have a mobile phone in their hands. If you go out without a mobile phone someday, you will definitely find it super-inconvenient, so mobile phones are also essential supplies. In today’s post, I will be discussing how using the navigation system on your mobile phone while driving can get you into traffic laws in your country. phone navigation & traffic laws, when can you cross the line when driving and using google maps on your phone?
The Danger of Using Your Mobile Phone While Driving
However, everyone also knows that over-reliance on mobile phones is also very bad. Although it is convenient for people to communicate, it is also more distant from each other. It is undeniable that the advent of mobile phones has brought a lot of convenience to people, but at the same time, there are also many problems. Just as many people now rely on mobile phone navigation when going out, although it can help people reach their destination faster, navigation errors may also occur. The situation, and if you use mobile navigation during driving, it is even more dangerous.
Especially Relevant: Two Car Air Conditioning Usage bad Habit That can Reduce the Life of Your Engine
Nigerian case. on December 3, Mary Ikoku a Nigerian development consultant reported that she was stopped, her driver’s licence seized and her car impounded for breaking a traffic rule that bothers on using google map while driving in Abuja Nigeria. Let me quote briefly from her ordeal
“Wow! Men of the Federal Road Safety Corps have just impounded my car. Asked what’s my offence, they said, show me your phone and I turned my phone to him, and the guy said you are under arrest for driving with the aid of Google map on your mobile phones. He said, madam, it is a serious traffic offence. Well, ladies and gentlemen, I’ve been given a ticket of N4000 payable to Remita my offence is using GPS. They have my car and my keys and my drivers license. When I’m done paying to remita then I will be checked into a national hospital for mental examination for using GPS while driving. The real mad folks are those who believe is an offence to drive with Google map. “
in October 2019, the Federal Capital Territory Sector Commander of the Federal Road Safety Corps, Mr Ayuba Gora, has said that driving with the aid of Google map using mobile phones is a serious traffic offence.
The Corps’s PRO, however, correct the statement and said the officer was quoted out of context. you may want to read the full statement where the claim was rebutted here. The current position of with respect to phone navigation & traffic laws in Nigeria is that of usage within the confines of the traffic laws. Now, how can you use google map or similar navigation system on your phone while driving legally? This any many more questions will be answered within the course of this post.
When I say mobile phone navigation, I mean google navigation system or equivalent on your mobile phone. This is entirely different from the on-board vehicle navigation system by usage. For your phone, you may need to attach it to a phone holder and ensure it is firmly secured. Your car’s navigations system is secured from the factory.
- The versatility of the mobile OS. For one, you are already used to your phone and its operation. nothing is complex about it.
- Addiction to the mobile phone: When you are having over-reliance on your mobile phone or you are addicted, you may skip using your car’s navigation even it also runs on the same operating system as your mobile.
- Mobile phone navigation saves more Time: Most of the time, your phone is already powered on. all you need to do is to launch your google maps and off you go. You must have hot the road before your car’s Navi loads completely.
- More updated features are available on mobile phone navigation. Especially when you are using google map. They keep improving the platform.
Please, don’t misquote me. Using the navigation on a trip or during a trip is not outlawed in any civil society. After all, that is why we have in-vehicle navigation systems. However, using your mobile phone navigation is certain ways while driving can violate the traffic laws of any country.
Now, let me explain this in detail by highlighting these dangers.
- You may be tempted to do other things on your phone while driving and using google maps. This is dangerous to you and other road users.
- Distractions of the highest degree may occur: for example, when you enter a pothole, your phone may try to fall off the phone holder. this can may you forget yourself in the bid to rescue your phone. that way, you will lose concentration and it can result in an accident.
- Another way that using a phone Navi while driving if you are not using the loudspeaker with your google maps. you may need to look at your phone’s screen instead of the road from time to time. Good for you if you do this on a congested road.
- Lastly, is the temptation that may arise from multitasking. I mean, you may graduate from using only the navigation on your phone to trying to read some chats or watch videos all while driving. obviously, these are very dangerous actions for you the driver as well as other motorists.
Sadly, an older vehicle navigation system is hugely outdated and they don’t contain the world map. However, if you are using a modern car with a modern navigations system, I see no reason why you should not use it and opt for your phone Navi instead. in a nutshell, the following reasons are why you need to use your car’s onboard navigation system as opposed to that of your phone.
- It is safe to use your car’s factory fitted or manually installed navigation system when compared with your phone.
- Best positioning: You vehicle’s Navi is positioned by the manufacturer for the best field of view.
- You hands are truly free. You have no need whatsoever to touch this while driving because everything is perfectly set up when you start your trip
- The most navigation system comes with a backup camera for rear view
- Also, it is more convenient to use in the sense that it makes use of your vehicle’s sound system directly.
- Voice command works perfectly with modern navigation system.
- Lastly, Some navigation systems now run on android operating system. If yours doesn’t, you can swap it to the one that runs on android.
Apparently, there is no problem using car navigation when driving. However, the traffic regulations clearly stipulate that you must not hold or operate electronic devices while driving. Furtherance to this, your eye must not be out of the normal driving sight. This is a global traffic law in every civil society.
When you driving, no matter what signal you are getting from your mobile phone, It is illegal to watch navigation or make phone calls. Therefore, although the owner uses a mobile phone for navigation when driving, touching your phone or getting caught starring at your phone(for whatever reason be it navigation..) while driving is against the rules, and you will be naturally be punished. I think that is what happened to The Nigerian Lady in my illustration above. I guess she was caught holding her phone while driving.
Another reason why you cannot use mobile phone navigation while driving is because it will distract the driver. Some drivers are prone to danger in order to watch the navigation without paying attention to the surrounding vehicle conditions. Look at the navigation on your mobile phone. Isn’t that the risk factor soaring? Because of this, the driver is not allowed to use electronic devices during the driving process, nor can he watch the navigation.
There are legal ways by which you can safely use your phone’s navigation during the process of driving. This methods, when followed, will keep you safe and also ensure you don’t break any traffic laws.
- Install your phone on a car phone holder whenever you want to use your phone navigation system.
- Since phone navigation & traffic laws cannot be separated, you need to safeguard yourself. Therefore, you should install your phone holder in your line of sight whereby you will not require to strain your eyes before you can see your trip’s progress. Some states would say don’t look away from the road at all. Therefore, check your local traffic law before you apply this method.
- In addition to the above and equally very important, start your trip before you start your car’s engine. Once you do this, you will have no need to fumble with your phone while driving.
- Similarly, if for any reason you wish to re-route or start afresh trip, please make sure you pull over and park your car.
- Another trick is for you to use and launch your navigation on your smartwatch. nOTE: This might not be acceptable in some countries.
- Last but not least, don’t ever mute your navigation’s voice, in fact, set it to the highest volume because this can help you to not stare at your phone while driving.