Safe Roads Alliance Lobbies MA Lawmakers To Pass Hands-Free Driving Bill

texting driving

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BOSTON (WBZ-AM/24/7 NewsSource) -- As the legislative session winds down, the Safe Roads Alliance is lobbying for a bill that would require hands-free driving in Massachusetts. If passed, the bill would ban drivers from using hand-held cell phones.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says distracted driving, primarily due to cell phones, causes ten percent of deadly crashes. More than a dozen states, including every New England state except Massachusetts and Maine, have enacted hands-free laws.

Standing in front of the State House Wednesday, Medford's Emily Stein, President of the Massachusetts Safe Roads Alliance, told WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Bill Marcus she wants lawmakers in the Bay State to require hands-free driving.

"My dad was killed by a distracted driver, so that's why I'm here," Stein said.

Stein said that fatal crash, in Acton in 2011, was caused by a driver programming their GPS.

"You can sit on your phone and type in a 30-character address, and the cops cannot do anything about it," Stein said.

The hands-free bill passed by the Senate and endorsed by Gov. Charlie Baker now sits in the House Ways and Means Committee, and has until July 31 to pass before the legislative session ends.

Opponents of the bill say it could lead to racial profiling.

(TTWN Media Networks LLC contributed to this report.)

WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Bill Marcus (@BillinChina) reports

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