Massachusetts Senate to consider distracted driving bill

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BOSTON >> Motorists in Massachusetts may soon have to put down their cellphones when they're on the road.

A bill prohibiting the use of hand-held mobile electronic devices while driving would also make it illegal to enter information by hand into a GPS device while behind the wheel.

Motorists could still talk on their cellphones, but only with hands-free technology. Exceptions would be made for emergency situations.

The bill calls for a fine of $100 for the first violation, $250 the second time and $500 for all violations after that. Three-time offenders would be hit with an auto insurance surcharge.

Fourteen states including Connecticut, New Hampshire, Vermont and New York have hands-free cellphone laws.

The state Senate is scheduled to debate the bill Thursday in its first session of the new year.


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