Jan 4, 2023 - News

Ohio to ban texting while driving

Distracted driving laws, by state
Data: National Conference of State Legislatures; Note: Hand-held bans are laws that allow the use of mobile devices while driving only in hands-free mode. Ohio's law banning texting goes into effect on April 3. In Nebraska, texting is a secondary offense only and in Missouri, the texting ban applies to teens only.; Map: Alice Feng/Axios

Ohio will soon join most of the country in fully banning texting while driving as a primary offense.

  • Gov. Mike DeWine signed the new rule into law yesterday. It takes effect in 90 days.

State of play: Law enforcement can currently only ticket texting drivers as a secondary offense, meaning if they are pulled over for another violation first.

  • Drivers younger than 18 can't use cellphones at all.

Of note: Ohio's new law isn't a complete ban — drivers will still be allowed to hold a phone to their ear during calls and use phones at stoplights.

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