The Wilson Times

North Carolina already bans texting and driving. Now state lawmakers want to prohibit all handheld use of smartphones and tablet computers behind the wheel.

House Bill 144, the Hands-Free N.C. Act, seeks to reduce distracted driving dangers by creating the new traffic infraction of unlawful use of a wireless communication device. The bipartisan legislation has four primary sponsors and 42 co-sponsors and seems like one of those feel-good public safety bills destined to find its way to the governor’s desk.

While cellphone use does cause and contribute to crashes, HB 144 would continue a piecemeal approach to regulating distracted driving that focuses on symptoms rather than causes. It may or may not make roads safer, but with graduated penalties of

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