Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105
For Immediate Release: February 17, 2011
Senate committee approves ban on texting while
The Senate Public Safety Committee has given approval
to legislation to ban texting while driving. State Sen. Jerry
Ellis is the author of Senate Bill 146 which was approved by the
committee on Thursday.
“Many people I’ve talked to have seen a near miss or accident
that involved someone not paying attention to the road because they
were texting while driving,” said Ellis, D-Valliant. “Just
since filing this bill I’ve heard from people who’ve been
involved in wrecks because of texting and driving.”
Numerous reports have outlined the dangers of texting while driving.
A study conducted by the Virginia
Tech Transportation Institute found texting while driving makes a person
23 times more likely to be in a collision. The University of Utah conducted
research that found people who were texting were just as impaired as
“This behavior puts everyone on the road at risk. A ban on texting
while driving could help save lives,” Ellis said.
Under the legislation, first-time offenders would face a fine of up
to $175. Subsequent violations could result in a fine of up to $500.
If the driver is involved in a crash at the time of violation, the fine
would be double those amounts.
Ellis said the ban would apply to all drivers, regardless of age, with
exceptions for emergency and medical personnel or law enforcement. There
is an exception for drivers who are using a wireless telecommunication
to report illegal activity, summon emergency help or to prevent injury
to a person or
SB 146 now moves to the full Senate for approval.
For more information contact:
Sen. Ellis: (405) 521-5614