California has had a ban on texting while driving and using a handheld cellphone behind the wheel for quite some time now. But that’s certainly not the case with every other state. Despite statistics outlining the dangers of distracted driving and groups like the National Transportation Safety Board calling for a nationwide ban on the practice, some holdouts remain across the country.
The state of Mississippi is one such holdout, but that could change now that a State Senator plans to introduce a measure in the upcoming legislative session that would ban handheld cellphone usage of any kind among all drivers. Currently, the state only bans cellphones among bus drivers and those with intermediate licenses or learner’s permits.
It should be noted that the same senator sought such a measure last year but failed to muster the support necessary to take the bill out of committee. He believes that such a ban is vital to ensuring the safety of Mississippi citizens. He also thinks that there might be other bills circulating the legislature that would outlaw only texting.
If the bill were to pass in its current form, any violators would face a hefty fine of up to $500. That number doubles if the offense is shown to have been a component of a crash. Anyone communicating with emergency or law enforcement personnel would be exempt from the ban.