NJ Senate Panel OKs Tougher Driver Cell Phone Law

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — A Senate committee has advanced a measure to increase fines for talking or texting while driving.

The bill proposes a graduated penalty system for violations of the state’s handsfree cell phone law.

A $200 fine would be imposed for the first offense, up from $100. A $400 fine would be assessed for a second offense happening within 10 years and a $600 penalty would be charged for subsequent offenses. Chronic offenders would be subject to 90-day license suspension.

Sen. Dick Codey, the bill sponsor, says studies show texting while driving is more dangerous than drunken driving. The West Orange Democrat says police in New Jersey write 10,000 tickets a month for cell phone law violations.

The measure moves to the full Senate. The Assembly has yet to consider it.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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Comments

One Comment

  1. Erik Wood says:

    I think legislation has value in raising public awareness in forums like this one but it will be difficult to solely legislate our way out of this issue. I just read that 72% of teens text daily – many text more 4000 times a month. New college students no longer have email addresses! They use texting and Facebook – even with their professors. This text and drive issue is in its infancy and its not going away.

    I decided to do something about it after my three year old daughter was nearly run down right in front of me by a texting driver . Instead of a shackle that locks down phones and alienates the user (especially teens) I built a tool called OTTER that is a simple, affordable app for smartphones.. I think if we can empower the individual then change will come to our highways now and not just our laws.

    Erik Wood, owner
    OTTER LLC
    OTTER app

  2. Steve says:

    Anyone that thinks this is about pubic saftey,and not about filling coffers that THEY depleted,is crazy!

    1. br says:

      more dangerous than drunk driving!!!!!!!! If that statement were true, wouldnt the appropriate response be an arrest? if you were driving that unsafe an arrest should be made. here in CA if you drive over 100mph they can hall you right off to county (i believe so anyway). anything you do that takes your full attention off the road is dangerous. i have almost re-ended cars a few times because i was looking for a CD. why dont we ask the publics opinion; would you rather have a DUI on the road or someone txting on there phone? im pretty confident all those asked would feel much more safe having the DUI off the road

      1. dc says:

        that;s why the public doesn’t get to decide these issues. They public smokes, drinks & drives and talks and texts on the phone while driving.

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