Proposed Bill Could Ban Cell Phone Use In School Zones & Highway Work Sites

Reported by: Melanie Kendall
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Updated: 1/21 12:33 am

You’ve heard it a million times, being on a phone while driving is a distraction.

House Bill 33 hopes to cut out that distraction with “no-phone zones” around schools and highway work sites.

Hillary Coltharp was texting and driving Labor Day weekend 2007. 

She now suffers from a traumatic brain injury and supports House Bill 33 to help prevent distractions like hers.

“You don't have a brain injury; if you're driving you have a healthy brain so hold that thought and then text,” said Coltharp.

“Nothing can be done to make the roads 100% safe,” said State Senate Majority Leader Damon Thayer, R-Georgetown who is against the bill.

Thayer said he is against texting and driving, which is already illegal in Kentucky.

“I'm trying to teach a 16-year-old how to drive and how to be safe and responsible and I think you have to take a level of personal responsibility,” said Thayer.

He thinks additional laws against cell phone use, like House Bill 33, are unnecessary.  

“I think it's a big government feel-good bill and frankly we don't need anymore feel good bills and we don't need anymore big government,” said Thayer.

“These children in school zones are counting on us to keep them safe same with these vulnerable construction workers,’ said Shawn Coltharp, Hillary’s mother.

“You can't put laws on the books against everything,” said Thayer.

The bill is in the House Transportation Committee and must first pass that before going to the House floor then the Senate before making it to the Governor’s desk to become a law.

As it is written now, the first offense is $50 and $100 for any other offense.  It does not apply to emergency and public safety vehicles.

The bill is in the House Transportation Committee and must first pass that before going to the House floor then the Senate before making it to the Governor’s desk to become a law.

As it is written now, the first offense is $50 and $100 for any other offense.  It does not apply to emergency and public safety vehicles.

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