Tempe Bans Driver Cellphone Use

By Mariana Dale
Published: Friday, March 1, 2019 - 7:14pm
Updated: Saturday, March 2, 2019 - 7:20pm

Tempe police can now stop anyone holding a cellphone while driving.

The City Council voted unanimously to enact the cellphone ban at a meeting Thursday.

“The facts are that texting causes accidents, including deaths,” said Councilwoman Jennifer Adams. “Anything we can do as public servants to prevent deaths is something that I’m going to support.”

The ban takes effect immediately.

For the first 30 days, officers will issue warnings. After that, a first offense will result in a $100 fine, a second offense a $250 fine and a $500 fine for subsequent offenses within two years.

Previously, Tempe officers could pull people over if a driver using a phone posed “articulable danger” to other people.

The ban does make allowances for people using their cell phones while parked or stopped. It also doesn’t apply to emergency responders or a driver reporting an emergency.

Several Phoenix-area cities also ban talking on a phone or texting while driving.

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