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GHSA News Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 8, 2012

Contact: Jonathan Adkins
(202)789-0942, x13
(202)669-9746 (cell)

Alabama Becomes 38th State to Ban Texting While Driving

WASHINGTON, D.C.—GHSA is pleased to report that Alabama has become the 38th state to outlaw the dangerous – but all too common – practice of texting while driving. Governor Robert Bentley signed the bill this morning. GHSA congratulates the legislature, the Governor and the Office of Highway Safety on this important achievement.

The new law prohibits Alabama drivers from operating a motor vehicle on a public street while text messaging on a handheld cell phone or other handheld wireless device. It is a primary law, meaning officers can city motorists for violations without any other traffic offense taking place. The penalties are $25 for a first conviction, $50 for a second and $75 for each later conviction. The law takes effect August 1.

GHSA has encouraged all states to pass a texting ban for all drivers and a complete cell phone ban for novice drivers. However, GHSA's message to all drivers remains: don't use cell phones or other electronic devices while driving, regardless of the current law.

Find all state distracted driving laws at: www.ghsa.org/html/stateinfo/laws/cellphone_laws.html.

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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, enhance program management and promote best practices. 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 www.ghsa.org. Find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GHSAhq or follow us on Twitter at @GHSAHQ.