G.E.M. Tang slammed for using phone while driving, says she was allowed to

8 September 2014 / 2 years 1 month ago

A recent photo uploaded by G.E.M. (鄧紫棋) has become a hot topic.

On September 4, the 23-year-old singer shared a picture of her driving in the rain on her official Weibo and commented, “Rainy day and it’s my first time driving on the road. My heart is beating really fast! Hahahaha!”

Attracting over 15,300 comments and nearly 68,000 likes, G.E.M.’s picture attracted controversial feedback from netizens.

The picture shows G.E.M. in the driver’s seat, one hand holding the wheel. Netizens left comments expressing that G.E.M. may have broken the law, as she was taking photos while she was driving.

“Can I ask why you’re taking pictures while you’re driving? You’re not considering safety. That’s against the law,” one netizen wrote. Another G.E.M. fan also said, “Watch the road! Stop taking pictures!”

In a phone interview, G.E.M. quickly clarified her reasons behind the photo in question, expressing that she was learning how to drive at the time and her instructor allowed her to take pictures.

“I took that picture when I stopped at a red light. I was taking driving lessons at the time and my instructor was sitting next to me. I asked him if I could take a picture since I stopped at a red light, and he said yes.”

G.E.M. does not think she had violated any traffic laws. She read the driving and safety manual at Hong Kong’s Transport Department, which specified that the driver can use a mobile phone when the car is parked or not moving.

However, there is a loophole to the system, reports Jayne Stars. Though G.E.M.’s car was not moving at the time, there remains to the possibility that the car would start moving at any time because her car was only at a stop light and not parked.

The safest time for a driver to use his or her phone is when the car is parked and the engine is off. Those who use mobile phones while driving can be fined up to $2,000 HKD.

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