NEW – Wireless company supports Miss. texting ban

Published 9:10 pm Thursday, March 19, 2009

Cellular South and the Mississippi Highway Patrol are urging lawmakers to pass legislation that would ban newly licensed teenage drivers from sending text messages while driving.

Under the bill, a new driver caught texting behind the wheel could face a misdemeanor charge and a fine of up to $500. If there’s an accident when someone is texting while driving, the fine would be up to $1,000.

The bill is awaiting action in the Senate. It has already cleared the house.

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Cellular South spokesman Terrell Knight said the bill reflects “what the wireless industry has been preaching.”

The legislation also would add six months to the minimum age for teenagers to get their driver’s licenses.

The bill is Senate Bill 2280.