South Dakota’s Cellphone-Use & Texting-While-Driving Laws

Read about South Dakota’s distracted driving laws and the costs of a violation.

In South Dakota, texting while driving is illegal. But there are no restrictions on talking on the phone while operating a vehicle.

South Dakota’s Text-Messaging-While-Driving Ban

South Dakota’s texting law prohibits all drivers from using a wireless communication device to write, send, or read a text message (or any other text-based communications) while operating a vehicle.

Exceptions to the Texting Law

South Dakota’s texting ban includes a number of exceptions. The restriction doesn’t apply to drivers who are:

  • lawfully parked
  • using voice-operated or hands-free technologies
  • contacting emergency services, or
  • writing, reading, selecting, or entering a telephone number or name for the purpose of making a call.

Penalties for Texting While Driving in South Dakota

A texting-while-driving violation is a petty offense that carries a $100 fine but no demerit points.

Distracted Driving and Other Possible Charges

In certain situations, a texting-while-driving violation could lead to reckless driving charges. And if a distracted driving offense contributes to the death of another person, vehicular homicide charges are a possibility.

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