Maryland to Consider Ban on Texting While Driving

Panel takes up measure

ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- Maryland may ask you to give your BlackBerry thumbs a rest -- at least while operating a large piece of machinery on local roads.

A panel of Maryland legislators is scheduled to hold a hearing Tuesday on a bill that would ban text messaging while driving. 

But how else will Jenny tell Jimmy she wants to be BFFs 4ever?  Oh, the horror...

Last year, the House of Delegates Environmental Matters committee rejected similar efforts, clearly realizing the importance of American Idol voting no matter where you are when Paula and Simon are on the boob tube.

This year's measure is sponsored by Howard County Delegate Frank Turner. It would prohibit a person from using a text messaging device to write, send, or read a text message while operating a motor vehicle.

Opponents have said the bills don't account for people who responsibly use cell phones while driving, and that driver distraction is caused by the conversations, not just holding a telephone. Opponents also point out that irresponsible cell phone use can already result in reckless driving charges.

Irresponsible cell phone use can also result in a higher phone bill, but it is unclear if lawmakers will take a stand on that topic during this legislative session, as well...

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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