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Is it legal to wear Google Glass behind the wheel?

Recently, a women's car insurance holder was pulled over in San Diego after allegedly being caught driving at 80mph while travelling in a 65mph zone. On the surface, there is nothing too unusual about this incident, but closer inspection of her traffic ticket suggests it could actually be a world-first.Google Glass

As well as mentioning her exceeding speed limits, the police officer also reportedly said that she was in violation of vehicle code 27602 – a regulation which means that individuals cannot drive a car whilst watching or operating certain television or video devices in that state.

She might have broken this law because she was wearing Google Glass while behind the wheel. Consequently, it has been claimed that the officer thought these high-tech glasses could prevent her from properly seeing the road as well as other motorists.

This could be the first time that anyone has ever been penalised for wearing the technology while driving.

However, the car insurance for women holder has stated that, when she was pulled over, her Google Glass was switched off. As a result, it could be argued that vehicle code 27602 would not apply to this situation and – perhaps because of this – she is reportedly considering appealing against the ticket.

Even so, this defence might not be enough. According to some reports, the officer recognised the gadget was turned off but still believed that the screen could prevent her from clearly seeing developing hazards – despite the technology apparently only obscuring a small part of the eye.

On the Frequently Asked Questions page for Google, the issue of using this gadget on the roads has been raised, with a spokesperson for the company stating that it "depends on where you are and how you use it".

Adding, "most states have passed laws limiting the use of mobile devices while driving any motor vehicle, and most states post those rules on their department of motor vehicles websites. Read up and follow the law!

"Above all, even when you’re following the law, don’t hurt yourself or others by failing to pay attention to the road".

Although it is currently unknown how much the driver was ordered to pay for speeding and wearing Google Glass while behind the wheel, the incident has certainly lead to many differing opinions.

However, if she does challenge her ticket in the courts, perhaps its legality could finally be resolved.

Photo © Ted Eytan via Flickr under Creative Commons Licence