By Bob Katzen
The Transportation Committee gave a favorable report to a bill that would prohibit drivers from using a hand-held cell phone or other device to make a call, use the device’s camera or access social media. The measure allows drivers to use only a hands-free phone. Use of a hand-held phone would be permitted in emergencies including if the vehicle was disabled; medical attention or assistance was required; police, fire or other emergency services were necessary for someone’s personal safety; or a disabled vehicle or an accident was present on a roadway.
Supporters say that the bill would save lives and prevent accidents. They note that the measure does not ban cell phone use but simply requires the use of hands-free ones. They pointed to accidents, deaths and injuries involving hand-held cell phones.
Some opponents say that the restriction is another example of government.