Google Glass motoring fine issued to Californian driver

Woman becomes first person to be penalised over use of wearable computing device.

A woman in San Diego, California, has reportedly become the first person to be fined for using Google Glass while driving.

Cecilia Abadie was pulled over for breaking the speed limit by 15mph 80mph in a 65mph area and when she stopped her vehicle the police officer noticed she was wearing the device.

While Abadie maintains the glasses were switched off at the time of the incident, she was still issued with a ticket that lists two alleged offences driving over the speed limit and "driving with monitor visible to driver (Google Glass)".

Google Glass has the potential to be a major distraction and crash risk behind the wheel.

On her Google+ page, Abadie said: "Is #GoogleGlass ilegal (sic) while driving or is this cop wrong??? Any legal advice is appreciated!! This happened in California. Do you know any other #GlassExplorers (users) that got a similar ticket anywhere in the US?"

She has also solicited legal advice through her account, receiving a mixed response from commenters, ranging from full support and requests for her to sue the state to condemnation for allegedly speeding and wearing the device, even if it was not active at the time.

In response to the case, the UK's Department for Transport said: "Drivers must give their full attention to the road, which is why it has been illegal since the 1980s to view a screen whilst driving, unless that screen is displaying driving information.

"There are no plans to change this and we have met with Google to discuss the implications of the current law for Google Glass. 

"Google are anxious their products do not to pose a road safety risk and are currently considering options to allow the technology to be used in accordance with the law."

Road safety charity Brake said the case highlights the need for drivers to be "completely focused" while behind the wheel, which means turning off technological devices when driving.

"Brake's stance is that Glass should be banned from use when driving, and we'd agree with the Californian police in this case Google Glass has the potential to be a major distraction and crash risk behind the wheel."

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