Measure Would Ban Teens From Calling While Driving

ATLANTA (AP) -- Georgia lawmakers will soon consider a measure that would ban teenage drivers from texting and making calls on their cell phones while driving -- and suspend the licenses of violators found at fault in accidents.

Georgia would join 17 other states and the District of Columbia that have passed cell phone restrictions for teen drivers if legislators adopt the measure during the legislative session that begins in January.

The measure's Republican sponsors say it would help keep Georgia's rookie drivers safe from distractions that could lead to fatal accidents.

The House plan would ban motorists under the age of 18 from talking or texting while driving, except in the case of an emergency such as a life-threatening situation or a call reporting a road hazard.

Violators would be fined up to $175 for the first offense and up to $500 for a second one. Drivers found at fault in an accident while violating the law would have their licenses suspended for 90 days. Second offenders would lose their licenses for six months.

The bill could be expanded to include all drivers.

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