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Idaho Falls considering distracted driving ordinance

It’s already illegal to text and drive in Idaho, but now the Idaho Falls City Council is considering a proposal to make it illegal to use a mobile phone while driving.

Councilman Jim Freeman, a retired firefighter, believes it would be an important step in the name of safety. He told a city council work session Monday that ten people per day are killed as a result of distracted driving.

His proposal would provide some exceptions for emergency responders and for those who use GPS navigation systems.

Police Chief Bryce Johnson said that, if the ordinance were adopted, the council should make the violation a primary offense to make the law more enforceable.

The penalty for violation could range anywhere from an infraction to a misdemeanor level.

Council also reviewed the ongoing cost of signage and other means of educating drivers about any new rules.

Council members generally supported the idea but wanted to see specific local data and a solid plan for implementing it. They plan to consider some of those specific details at a future work session.

To learn more about the proposed ordinance and how to comment on it go to the city’s website by clicking here.

News Team

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