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AZ Senate Votes to Ban Texting While Driving

By Kamika Dunlap on March 23, 2010 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Arizona is on track to join several other states that already have laws on the books making it illegal to text while driving. The recent AZ Senate vote bans texting while driving.

According to the Associated Press, the state Senate voted to approve a bill that would ban texting while driving. The bill would impose a fine on drivers distracted by texting. The Senate's 19-10 vote on the bill now sends it to Arizona's House.

Violators would be subject to a $50 fine, a penalty that rises to $200 if there is an accident. The measure however does allow for drivers to receive texts while behind the wheel, if they pull off the road and park the car.

As previously discussed, Colorado, Louisiana, New York, Virginia and Washington are among at least 20 states that ban text messages for all drivers. Nine states ban text messaging for teen drivers.

About 97 percent of Americans support a ban on texting while driving, according to a recent New York Times/CBS News poll, as previously discussed in FindLaw's Common Law.

Arizona's bill is supported by cell phone and insurance companies, as well as hospital, police and firefighter groups.

Recently, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood  stepped up his campaign against texting while driving. He said he favored rewarding states that banned texting while driving and would support legislation to deny federal funds to states that permit cell phone texting in cars.

Bus and large commercial truck drivers have already been banned from texting while driving or using handheld cell phones, as previously discussed.

Lastly, texting while driving has been banned for federal staff, according to an executive ordered recently signed by President Barack. Federal employees were required to comply with the ban starting on Dec. 30, 2009.

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