23 Apr 2008

Legislation in CNMI calls for banning cell phone use while driving

10:23 am on 23 April 2008

Using a hand held cell phone in the Northern Marianas while driving would be banned if a new bill is passed.

The bill would allow only hands free cell phones while driving.

The bill's sponsor, Edward Salas, says he recognises the importance of carrying wireless phone in cases of emergency on the road.

He wants people to use wireless phone for emergency purposes only - those involving a call to the fire division, police or hospital.

The Marianas Variety reports that the bill exempts professionals who respond to emergency situations and those who use wireless phones for work-related purposes.

According to the bill, emergency services include law enforcement, healthcare, and fire response.

Mr Salas' measure also seeks to prohibit people under 18 years old to use wireless phone while driving, even if the unit is a hands-free device.