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Google Glass driver case dismissed

Case over motorist caught using Google Glass at the wheel dropped.

The case of a woman who was caught driving too fast while using Google Glass has been dismissed, it has emerged. Software developer Cecilia Abadie’s case was dropped because no proof was given the device was switched on at the time of the incident.

Ms Abadie was pulled over by a California Highway Patrol officer for doing 80mph in a 65mph zone on Interstate 15 in San Diego back in October 2013. She was cited for using a visible monitor ─ an offence reserved for drivers caught watching a screen while driving.

Commissioner John Blair said the code cited required proof the device was in operation at the time of the offence, but found there was no proof beyond a reasonable doubt. A verdict of not guilty was given. Ms Abadie was also ruled not guilty for speeding.

The California highway patrol argued that anything that can potentially take a driver’s attention off the road should be considered dangerous.

The Department for Transport said driving while using Google Glass would become illegal in the UK. “We are aware of the impending rollout of Google Glass and are in discussion with the Police to ensure that individuals do not use this technology while driving,” a Department for Transport spokesman told back in August 2013.

“It is important that drivers give their full attention to the road when they are behind the wheel and do not behave in a way that stops them from observing what is happening on the road.”

The Department for Transport has since changed its tune, however, stating that it is now looking at ways Google Glass could be used legally by drivers.

“We have met with Google to discuss the implications of the current law for Google Glass. Google [is] anxious their products do not pose a road safety risk and are currently considering options to allow the technology to be used in accordance with the law,” a spokesman told the Sunday Times.

Google Glass is a wearable pair of glasses that have a computer built in, which can be controlled using voice commands. Developers are currently testing the devices before it goes on sale to the public later in 2014.

Until the law is clarified we would recommend you take Google Glass off when at the wheel, if only to minimise the potential distraction.


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