Senators seek nationwide ban on texting while driving

A group of senators introduced a bill that would force states to ban people from texting while driving or risk the loss of federal highway funds. The bill comes shortly after a Virginia Tech Transportation Institute study found truck drivers who were texting were 23 times more likely to be involved in or nearly get into an accident.

"The federal government ought to pass a law banning this dangerous and growing practice to protect the millions of Americans on our nation's roads," said Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.). "It is a matter of public safety." Schumer noted that texting has become much more widespread over the past few years. He introduced the bill along with Democratic Sens. Robert Menendez (N.J.), Mary Landrieu (La.) and Kay Hagan (N.C.).

Currently, 13 states and the District of Columbia have enacted laws that prohibit texting while driving.

"We support state legislative remedies to solve this issue," CTIA President Steve Largent said in a statement. "But simply passing a law will not change behavior. We also need to educate new and experienced drivers on the dangers of taking their eyes off the road and hands off the wheel. CTIA and our members have been working to educate all drivers on the dangers of distracted driving for years now and we hope that people continue to learn more." 

For more:
- see this Washington Post article
- see this AP article

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