States Roll Out Bans on Texting While Driving

23 states mull laws against practice already banned in 19
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 25, 2010 4:19 PM CST
Graphic shows states with laws against texting while driving.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Alarmed by the dangers of driving while text messaging, legislatures in 23 states are considering outlawing the practice, which 19 states already ban. Lawmakers “often get involved because there's a high-profile accident that had to do with texting,” an expert tells USA Today. “Also, because everybody has a cellphone now.” Experts expect many of the pending laws to pass, and Sen. Chuck Schumer is working on a bill that would strip states that don’t ban texting while driving of 25% of federal highway funding.

One AAA exec foresees “a dozen or more" new bans in 2010. “There's clear public disapproval of the behavior, and there's strong public support for a law.” The president of a nonprofit recently formed by the federal government to combat the practice, whose mother was killed by a distracted driver, was more forceful. “That’s a no-brainer,” she says. “I'm kind of at a loss as to why every state doesn't have a no-texting law.”

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