State News

Texting ban for drivers passes Senate committee

Posted May 19, 2009

— A House bill to ban North Carolina motorists from writing text messages and e-mails while driving has had smooth sailing so far in the Senate.

A Senate judiciary committee agreed Tuesday to the legislation with little debate and sent it on to the appropriations committee. The same committee passed a similar bill weeks ago, but passing the House version gives the ban a better chance of getting to Gov. Beverly Perdue's desk more quickly.

Cell phone text message OMG! Texting ban closer for N.C. drivers

"I think it'll be rather quick. It's not a complicated bill. It's rather simple to understand," said Sen. Stan Bingham, R-Davidson.

The House approved the texting ban by a near-unanimous vote last month.

Supporters say the ban would reduce driver distractions that can lead to highway accidents.

"How can you drive (while texting), I mean, God knows," Bingham said. "You might as well meet a drunk driver if you meet someone texting, looking at the floorboard or looking at their cell phone."

Violators could face a $100 fine plus court costs. There are exceptions for police and rescue workers and in some other cases.

Even some drivers who admitted to sending and receiving text messages while behind the wheel called a texting ban a good idea.

"From personal experience, I know it's not a good idea," driver Candy Pambu said. "I'm a teenager and I text a lot, but you know, when you're driving, you're not only responsible for yourself but other drivers on the road."

Alaska, California, Connecticut, Louisiana, Minnesota, New Jersey and Washington already have texting-while-driving bans.


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  • ambidextrous cat May 20, 2009

    It is kind of sad that we, as a people, are so pathetic that we need to text when we should be paying attention to what is possibly the most dangerous thing that we do in our daily life (sword swallowers excepted naturally). It is sad that we need a law to stop (really who believes that?) people from doing this. Common sense and a concern for other people and one's self should keep us all from doing this.

    Agreed. Driving is dangerous, it's not a leisure activity. It requires concentration. Why is it so hard for people to just simply drive? These fools should lose their licenses for doing anything other than driving. They can KILL other people due to their stupidity.

  • ambidextrous cat May 20, 2009

    A person who is stupid enough to text while driving should be required to hand over their car to me personally. ;)

    I could use a new car.

  • fkhaywood May 20, 2009

    Common sense is not very common any more!

  • jplace May 20, 2009

    Man, I have never seen such selfishness in my life. First we have the smokers who say their right to pollute the lungs of other people are being infringed upon. Now we have people who honestly believe that texting while driving is OK. Like smoking this is a public health issue. The texting related accident rates are rising. This even includes accidents when people are walking and texting. No one has the right to endanger the health and safety of others. Period.

    By the way, by law Public Health holds a policing power. This precludes property rights. Rights may be restricted if it protects the health or the community. The same people who believe that they can text and drive and smoke wherever they want also probably think restaurant inspections infringe upon property rights too. I am sure they would just love to get food poisoning.

  • shortcake53 May 20, 2009

    Durhamighty, i assure you this is no problem for me, as i have never texted in my life. I have no fear whatsoever of being "caught". And i find it totally ridiculous that anyone would have a problem passing this bill. NOBODY is so important that they need to be in constant contact with anyone else. Gee, however in the world did our parents and grandparents get along without all these devices? Quite well actually.

  • blackdog May 19, 2009

    ...more government control of our lives...

  • SnoopDogg May 19, 2009

    I often text while driving. This bill is ridiculous. If pulled, I could erase the sent message, and have no record of sending the text message. Texting would be banned, but surfing the net while driving would not?! I can think of hundreds of things more dangerous than texting while driving (i.e. applying makeup, shaving, reading the newspaper, putting in contacts). Should all of those have bills in our General Assembly? What a waste of time.

  • Journey985 May 19, 2009

    While I am no expert, but last time I checked LEO's reaction time is the same as the rest of the motorists on the while I support the ban on texting while driving, it should include ALL drivers!!!

  • validpoint May 19, 2009

    ban everything! lol

  • TeresaBee May 19, 2009

    I almost hate to bring this up but the young lady that died in a one car accident in Clayton, Brittney Hicks, lost control of her car and over corrected and ran into a tree with no seatbelt on. It was a beautiful morning,what could of had her loose control of her car? Phone? Texting? Looking for a CD? Reaching into the back of her car for a pocketbook? You just don't loose control of a car driving a straight line, or a curve if you are not speeding and she wasn't. Lives get lost when people are distracted. Period. Period.