Rhode Island Lawmaker Wants to Ban Phone Use while Driving

January 22, 2010

A Rhode Island lawmaker is renewing his push to ban drivers from using hand-held cell phones while behind the wheel.

Pawtucket Democrat Peter Kilmartin introduced a bill Tuesday that bans drivers and bicyclists from using mobile phones that are not equipped with a hands-free device. Kilmartin has been trying to make the practice illegal since 1999 and tells The Providence Journal that study after study back his position.

He has the support of other lawmakers as well as cell phone companies and the state Transportation Department.

Opponents say the state needs more comprehensive legislation that bans drivers from engaging in all sorts of distracting practices.

The state last year banned texting while driving.

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