Careful, nerds: Wearing Google Glass while driving may get you a ticket

While Google Glassers will soon have a further dorkening of their beloved accessory to contend with, there may be a bigger problem to worry about: Driving with the Internet on your face may be considered a ticketable offense.

Self-described Transhumanist and prolific #GoogleGlass poster, Cecilia Abadie took to Google+ (of course) to claim the title for what appears to be the first person to receive a ticket for wearing Google Glass while driving.

In her initial post on the incident, Ms. Abadie said:

A cop just stopped me and gave me a ticket for wearing Google Glass while driving! The exact line says: Driving with Monitor visible to Driver (Google Glass). Is #GoogleGlass ilegal while driving or is this cop wrong??? Any legal advice is appreciated!! This happened in California. Do you know any other #GlassExplorers that got a similar ticket anywhere in the US?

Abadie later posted a clear scan of the ticket, which we have provided below:

Google Glass TicketCecilia Abadie / Google+
A scan of the ticket shows one of the violations as 
“Driving with Monitor visible to driver (Google Glass).” (Click to enlarge.)

The ticket actually makes note of two violations, the first being speeding; Abadie confessed in the G+ comments to the legitimacy of the speeding infraction, saying "The speeding was justified as I was in a 65 mph zone and thought I was on a 75mph zone." However a second infraction clearly refers to "Driving with monitor visible to driver (Google Glass)".

The Glass infraction references California Vehicular Code 27602, which prohibits drivers from watching television. Specifically, VC 27602 states:

A person shall not drive a motor vehicle if a television receiver, a video monitor, or a television or video screen, or any other similar means of visually displaying a television broadcast or video signal that produces entertainment or business applications, is operating and is located in the motor vehicle at a point forward of the back of the driver’s seat, or is operating and the monitor, screen, or display is visible to the driver while driving the motor vehicle.

We should also note that the vehicular code in question explicitly exempts using GPS from the code. So, there appears to be some room to accommodate new technologies into the law. For now, Abadie appears intent on fighting the Google Glass violation. As mobile technology continues its evolution into wearables, the law will be forced to accomodate strange new form factors.

We'll see more of this.

UPDATE: A Google spokesperson replied to our requests for comment with the following non-response response: "As we make clear in our help center, Explorers should always use Glass responsibly and put their safety and the safety of others first.  More broadly, Glass is built to connect you more with the world around you, not distract you from it. It’s early days for Glass and we look forward to hearing feedback from Explorers and others in advance of a wider consumer launch next year."

Subscribe to the Best of TechHive Newsletter

Comments