It’s Official: Looking at Your Phone in a Honolulu Crosswalk is Now Illegal
Hello? That means you! You, crossing the street blindly glued to your tiny screen—look up for a second! Or you’ll get a ticket. Seriously.
Photo: David Croxford
Crossing the street? Put the phone down. If you don’t, be prepared to pay a fine ranging from $15 to $99—because Honolulu’s Bill 6 takes effect today, Oct. 25.
At every stage of its short life, the bill has excited controversy and comment—a lot of it of the incredulous “what will they criminalize next?” variety. As introduced by Honolulu City councilmember Brandon Elefante in July, and signed by Mayor Kirk Caldwell, the bill states that “no person may cross a street or highway while viewing a mobile electronic device.”
Now it’s the law. Sneaking a peek at that Snapchat before it disappears may cost you if you happen to be hoofing it across the boulevard. Devices mentioned specifically in the bill’s final language include phones, personal digital assistants, pagers, video games, laptops and “any digital photographic device.”
Fitbits and the Apple Watch were left off the list. (In photos, Elefante does not appear to be wearing either.) Will the loophole be tested—perhaps by duct-taping an iPad to one’s wrist?
Just don’t complain to us if you don’t get away with it.