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If you're travelling down I-90 in Washington State and texting your BFF on a CrackBerry, then you might want to put it down. Washington has become the first U.S. state in the union to ban text messaging while driving. The legislation against driving while texting (henceforth to be known as the dreaded DWT) was rolled into a similar measure against talking on one's cell phone without using a hands-free device, a regulation many cities and states have already adopted.
Washington Gov. Christine Gegoire signed the measures into Washington state law last Friday (she was reportedly flanked by children injured from car accidents involving cell phone distractions). Like many laws of this sort, the po-po can't pull you over if they spot you Twittering away in the driver's seat. You need to be caught doing something worse, like swerving across the center line, to get pulled over. If Officer Roscoe P. Coltrain spots a warm Qwerty riding shotgun though, you'll likely be nailed with a $124 fine. If that happens, you won't be LOL.

[Source: Seattle Times]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      I am not surprised at this. While they are at it, they should make it a more general ban like on laptops amongst other things. Saw that once, I thought I was going to be in big trouble when the gentleman swerved into me on a bridge. I braked in time while he continued to swerve left and right, completely intent on whatever he was doing on his laptop propped against his steering wheel. *sigh*
      • 8 Years Ago
      2> Go away, we don't want you here.
      • 8 Years Ago
      say you get pulled over for "swerving across the center lane" when you stop if you quietly put you texting device in your pocket, how will they know?
      • 8 Years Ago
      Don't know what I think of this, but it's a better idea than her previous ones...

      Tried to ban "specialty" vehicles from being registered in Washington.

      Let local governments add a fee to license tabs. Voters approved a $30 across the board fee. The bill was overturned in court, but for fear of backlash they adjusted the rates anyways. Guess they got tired of letting the people have their way.
      • 8 Years Ago
      from the bus to seattle, i see many things. today on I-5 southbound: a guy eating something out of a tupperware container, with a spoon. obviously liquid, because he was being very careful about spilling it.

      can we have a law against this, too?

      should we call it all "distracted driving" and leave it up to the officer what "distracted" is? what if i was flipping burgers on my george forman grill...
      • 8 Years Ago
      I can't imagine trying to text a phone message while driving. I find it next to impossible to do with my current phone. I never understood the attraction to text messages, then again, my computer golden age was in the mid-1980's, so if you remember a Commodore 64 or Amiga, smile in knowing I had a kick ass BBS too.

      • 8 Years Ago

      Time to start shopping in Seattle for a new place.
      • 8 Years Ago
      The governor of Washington State is Christine Gregoire, a "she".
      • 8 Years Ago
      It's about damn time.

      I was nailed by a guy that ran a red light because he was texting and didn't see the light had turned red. Thank god I was the second car that he hit.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Yeah, this is good. As a Washington resident, I appreciate this law. Texting while driving is a dangerous distraction.

      And honestly, Autoblog: Do you no work before posting articles? "Chris" is short for Christine. That is not a guy, just do a touch of work first. Please. And the article says it's a $101 fine, not $124. Come on, at least READ the article you cite. :)
      • 8 Years Ago
      LOL you would have to ticket the police officers here first thing. I have lost count of the times I have watched them text or talk on their cell phones. Sorry, Your not going to stop it. Just like your never going to stop speeding, nose picking, talking in the car to other people, changing the radio station, eating and drinking.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Reportedly, the NJ state trooper involved in the accident while driving Gov. Corzine was doing 91 MPH and texting at the same time. The "other guy" was cited. What level of inattention was there on the officer's part? I still haven't heard any news about the legal status of this cop.
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