Bill With Tougher Penalties For Cell Phone Drivers Advances In Connecticut

HARTFORD, CT (AP / CBSNewYork) – A bill imposing tougher penalties for texting or using a hand-held mobile phone while driving is progressing through the Connecticut General Assembly.

WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau: Repeat Violators Could Face A $500 Fine

The legislature’s Judiciary Committee voted 23-20 on Thursday approved the measure, which allows police officers to seize a repeat offender’s driver’s license for 24 hours, as they can in alcohol-related cases.

New Canaan Rep. John Hetherington wanted to require an officer to seize the license, but that part of the bill was amended to give police the discretion. Some lawmakers said the original requirement gave police too much power.

Still, he backs the measure, telling WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau, “I’m hopefull that we’ll see it pass because… we’ve got to get people’s attention on this and its not happening.”

The bill, which also increases the penalty for repeat violators of the ban from $150 to $500, moves to the House of Representatives.

First-time violators would still face a $100 fine.

Connecticut first banned the use of hand-held cell phones while driving in 2005.

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


One Comment

  1. kendra says:

    that shouldn,t be cause cops act like they are above the law when only god is above the law and no 1 else ya heard me and i think that they should monitor the use of cellphones being used in cars while driving more often cause a driver was tiring real hard a few years ago to kill my daughter and i so i really really do take this seriously when it involves the public…

  2. Raspame Duro says:

    They allow police to use phones but honestly what kind of special training is provided in using a phone while driving??? It’s ridiculous and discriminatory, watch some NypD officers bull Sh?t on the phone while they drive and they don’t drive any better than the average Joe.
    I seen NYC parks dept employees, traffic agents, sanitation workers, and postal workers all talking on phones while driving. What’s the emergency that NYC Sanitation workers have to talk on the phone while driving.

    NYC and CT need to start monitoring their own employees before they try to impose penalties on it’s citizens that civil servant abuse themselves.

  3. MrPhilip Philip Philips says:

    I myself find it very difficult to answer a call on the phone when I am driving so much so I don’t even touch it. I think it is plain stupidity for any one to do so by putting other lives at risk. And I see a lot of people doing it with no concern at all. they must be made to suffer the cost of a life for each call they answer or make.Perhaps then they will heed the law.

    1. Tom Hyatt says:

      Need to make it apply to the police also.If they talk on phone and then ticket everyone else you are sending out mixed messages. Just like obeying the speed limits..The common courtesy they give to each other and not write tickets should be grounds to lose your job. One strike you are out.

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