Officials are considering traffic signs, radio announcements and brochures as ways to educate drivers that holding a cellphone up to the ear to talk while driving or sitting in traffic will be illegal a year from now in New Hampshire. Gov. Maggie Hassan is expected to sign a bill that makes hand-held cellphone use while driving punishable by a $100 fine for the first offense. The price rises to $250 for a second offense and $500 for subsequent offenses within a 24-month period. The bill allows adults to talk on cellphones while driving if they use hands-free phones, devices built into the vehicle or two-way radios.
This week All Things Considered is looking at some of the key bills of the 2014 legislative session.
One of the most high-profile bills at the statehouse this year was a plan to ban the use of hand-held cell phones while driving.
Garry Rayno covers the statehouse for the New Hampshire Union Leader. He explains to All Things Considered host Brady Carlson how the bill came to pass the House and Senate, and some of the details of the measure.
The bill, passed by the New Hampshire House last week, represents “the most comprehensive distracted driving bill in the nation,” according to legislative testimony from Earl Sweeney, assistant commissioner of public safety.