NEW YORK CITY – First New Jersey and now New York could be next to ban text messaging behind the wheel.
Councilman David Weprin plans to unveil a measure Friday that would ban the sending or reading of text messages while driving in New York City.
Weprin said that text messaging while driving is a risk to drivers, passengers, and pedestrians and the probability for an accident is higher since the phone is a distraction from the road.
The ban would be modeled after the state's ban on the use of cell phones while driving which imposes a $100 fine for the first violation.
A similar bill is pending approval by the State Legislature but Weprin hopes the announcement of his proposal attracts attention. Weprin wants to raise awareness about a new system employed by the New York Taxi and Limousine Commission which would have drivers text-message dispatchers whether they are available to pick up a passenger requesting a handicapped-accessible cab.
He finds the system has potential to create a dangerous situation.
The New York Taxi and Limousine Commission said it would require drivers to pull over to text-message.
Alaska, Minnesota, New Jersey, and Washington are the only states that currently ban text-messaging while driving. Sixteen others are considering passing a bill.
Source: 1010 Wins, NY