Is hands-free cell phone use any safer while driving? - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Is hands-free cell phone use any safer while driving?

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Debra Storm Debra Storm
Traffic Traffic
A bill already filed in the Georgia General Assembly could make it illegal for you to talk on your cell phone while you drive, unless you use a hands-free device.  Some say while it's a step in the right direction, it's still distracted driving.

Debra Storm, who owns Do Co Driving School, has seen firsthand how cell phones have become more of a problem for drivers.

"We've seen a lot of people come in for defensive driving classes because they've had tickets for being distracted, or they've had accidents because of using their cell phones."

To crack down on distracted driving, some state lawmakers are backing a proposed house bill which would only allow drivers to talk on their cell phones using hands-free devices.

Ossie Evans, already makes sure to use a hands-free device if he's driving.

"I think it's a lot safer because you can keep your hands on your steering wheel and your eyes on the road."

Some drivers say even if you're using a hands free device, you're still distracted behind the wheel.

"I really think that people should just park and then use the phone instead of trying to conversate while they're driving, because it is distracting," Lakesha Hall.

And Storm agrees. "They're still distracted, even though they're using a hands-free device, it's not the use of the hands, it's the use of the brain that makes the difference," Storm said.

State lawmakers banned texting and driving in 2010, and Storm believes this legislation is another step in the right direction.

"We already have laws against texting and we're still seeing people texting. So it takes a while, even though there's a law passed, it takes a while to get that into place and really enforce. But I think it would help."

Help keep everyone safe on the road.

If the bill becomes law, driving and talking without a hands-free device would be a misdemeanor and carry a fine up to $150.

14 states have already prohibit driving and talking on a hand-held cell phone.

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