Md. Texting While Driving Ban Starts Saturday | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : Morning Edition

Filed Under:

Md. Texting While Driving Ban Starts Saturday

Play associated audio
 
A driver uses a cell phone to text while driving.
(AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty, File)
  A driver uses a cell phone to text while driving.

If you drive in Maryland, its time to put that cellphone down and stop texting. Beginning Saturday, police in Maryland can stop and ticket drivers who use their mobile phones to text, email or read messages while driving.

"The state wanted to tighten up the law and make it clear that when you're driving on Maryland roads they expect you to drive on Maryland roads not reading email or responding to texts," says Lon Anderson of AAA from the Mid-Atlantic, which pushed hard for the change.

Police issued more than 9,000 tickets to drivers for texting, but supporters of the measure felt making the primary offense would better accomplish the goal of getting drivers to stop texting, so state lawmakers okayed the switch earlier this year.

The first offense carries a fine of $70 and one point on the individual's driver's license. But if police believe the texting caused an accident, the fine jumps to $110 and three points toward a suspended license.

Two other new traffic laws will also take effect today. One would expand the number of people who have to breathe into an alcohol measuring device that locks their vehicle before the can drive if they exceed the legal limit. The other makes it a misdemeanor to cause the death of a person while operating a vehicle in a criminally negligent manner.

NPR

Not My Job: Drummer Marky Ramone Gets Quizzed On Marky Mark

Marky Ramone, who has just written a memoir called Punk Rock Blitzkrieg, will see if he can correctly answer three questions about Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch.
NPR

Silly, Saucy, Scary: Photos Show The Many Faces Of Ugly Fruit

Wonky produce can take on absurdly entertaining shapes. But one food activist says learning to love these crazy contours is key to stopping mounds of food waste.
NPR

Funding Homeland Security: Where Do We Go From Here?

President Obama late Friday signed a stopgap measure to keep the department running for another week, but the tussle over his executive action on immigration, linked to the funding, is not over yet.
NPR

A Neuroscientist Weighs In: Why Do We Disagree On The Color Of The Dress?

Robert Siegel speaks with Dr. Bevil Conway, a neuroscientist at Wellesley College, about the dress that has the whole Internet asking: What color is it?

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.