A Victoria man says his phone was in his cupholder when he was issued distracted driving ticket by Saanich Police. (Twitter/Josh Delgado)

Unclear laws to blame for cupholder cellphone tickets: lawyer

Island driver says cellphone was in cup holder when he was issued distracted driving ticket

A Saanich driver is the second B.C. motorist to go public after receiving a ticket for having a cellphone in the car’s cup holder.

Josh Delgado posted a picture of a $368 ticket he was issued by Saanich Police Sept. 23 for using an electronic device while driving. In the tweet, he says he’s going to court to defend his right to have his cellphone sitting in the cup holder while driving.

Delgado’s post follows a similar incident in the Lower Mainland earlier this month, when a Richmond senior received a distracted driving ticket on Vancouver’s West Georgia Street while stopped at a red light.

Her son, Trevor Kramer, told Black Press Media that his mother had both hands on the steering wheel and her cellphone in her cup holder when she received the violation.

Vancouver Police later canceled the ticket.

RELATED: B.C. senior’s $368 ticket for cellphone in cup holder sparks debate

RELATED: Police cancel $368 ticket given to B.C. senior for having cellphone in cup holder

Kyla Lee, an Immediate Roadside Prohibition (IRP) lawyer, says the law is unclear and causes confusion for motorists.

“The biggest concern I have as a lawyer is inconsistent enforcement of the law,” she said, adding that after nine years of distracted driving enforcement, there should be clarity from the government and consistency among police and RCMP.

“Without that we can’t have confidence in them,” Lee said. “If you don’t know whether what you’re doing is legal or illegal… everyone is going to be driving around in a state of fear.”

“It impacts drivers every day because people aren’t able to make decisions about how to govern themselves,” she added.

Like Delgado, drivers have recourse for provincial violation tickets they disagree with – motorists can can file a dispute by mail or in person at their local court house.

Speaking to media at the B.C. legislature Wednesday, Public Safety Minister Mike Farnsworth said police have some discretion, but cellphones must be mounted and not accessible to drivers.

RELATED: Phone in cupholder isn’t OK, B.C. public safety minister says

Saanich Police did not respond to a request for comment by the time of publication.

With files from Tom Fletcher.



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

City of Rossland looks to implement mail ballot voting

City said new procedure could make voting easier and more accessible for residents

Drugs, stolen bike and cheques seized during RCMP search in Castlegar

Two men were taken into police custody during the search warrant

Morning start: This is the fastest growing city in the Kootenays

Here is your Kootenays’ morning start for Monday, May 25

A second wave of COVID-19 is probable, if history tells us anything

B.C.’s top doctor says that what health officials have learned this round will guide response in future

Mountain Pineapple defers application for new cannabis store in Rossland

The application was originally going to be reviewed by city council on May 19

Trudeau to seek 10 days of paid sick leave for Canadian workers, says talks are ongoing

Paid sick leave is key to keeping COVID-19 spread under control, prime minister says

Vancouver Island hasn’t seen a new homegrown case of COVID-19 in two weeks

Island’s low and steady transmission rate chalked up to several factors

Eight people arrested in Victoria homeless camp after enforcement order issued

Those living in tents were given until May 20 to move indoors

Andrew Weaver says he was ready to defeat John Horgan government

Independent MLA blasts B.C. Greens over LNG opposition

44% fewer passengers flew on Canadian airlines in March 2020 than in 2019

COVID-19 pandemic has hit airlines hard as travel remains low

Commercial rent relief applications open as feds encourage landlords to apply

Program would see government cover 50 per cent of the rent

COVID-19: B.C. park reservations surge as campgrounds reopen

Keep trying, many sites not reservable, George Heyman says

B.C. residents can now reserve a provincial campsite for a stay starting June 1

Campsite reservations will only be available to British Columbians

Most Read