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Illinois House OKs ban on cell phones while driving

2:55 PM, Mar 1, 2013   |    comments
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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The Illinois House has approved a measure that would prohibit using cell phones while driving.

The 64-46 vote Friday moves the bill to the state Senate for consideration. The measure would force drivers to use hands-free devices or use speakerphone features for calls.

Police would be able to stop and ticket drivers holding a cell phone except during emergency situations. Chicago Democrat Rep. John D'Amico (duh-MEE'-koh) says 76 Illinois communities -- including Chicago -- already ban talking on phones and driving.

Opponents say the bill is unfair to individuals with hearing problems and those who cannot afford high-tech phones. D'Amico touted his measure as a public-safety matter.

Texting while driving is already illegal in Illinois.

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The bill is HB1247.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

AP

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