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GHSA News Release

June 19, 2009

Contact: Jonathan Adkins or Kara Macek
(202)789-0942, ext.13 or 14
(202)669-9746, cell

Number of States Banning Texting While Driving Doubles in ‘09

North Carolina Becomes 14th State to Ban Dangerous Driving Habit

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today, North Carolina Governor Bev Perdue signed a law banning all drivers from text messaging while driving. The Tar Heel State becomes the 14th state with this law. In just the first six months of 2009, seven new states have passed broad texting while driving bans, bringing the total to 14, plus the District of Columbia. As of December 2008, only seven states plus D.C. had enacted similar legislation.

GHSA expects this number to continue to grow – the 2009 state legislative season has already seen more than 200 proposed distracted driving regulations. According to GHSA Executive Director Barbara Harsha, “There’s a tremendous amount of interest in state legislatures and the highway safety community in the distracted driving issue. Regardless of the law, texting and driving should not mix. We need to restore some common sense to driving.”

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Current state cell phone and text messaging bans as well as a variety of distracted driving background is posted at

The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA)® is a nonprofit association representing the highway safety offices of states, territories, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. GHSA provides leadership and representation for the states and territories to improve traffic safety, influence national policy and enhance program management. Its members are appointed by their Governors to administer federal and state highway safety funds and implement state highway safety plans. Contact GHSA at 202-789-0942 or visit