Oklahoma Senate Panel Approves Texting Ban For Drivers

Thursday, February 17th 2011, 3:39 pm
By: News On 6

The Associated Press

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Oklahoma motorists could face fines of up to $500 for texting while driving under a bill approved by a Senate panel, despite concerns that enforcing the measure would pose problems for law enforcement.

The Senate Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security voted 6-2 on Thursday for the bill that would allow police to issue a citation only if the motorist were stopped for some other reason. It now heads to the full Senate.

Oklahoma Highway Patrol spokesman Maj. Rusty Rhoades says the agency supports the concept of a ban, but hasn't taken a position on the bill by Democratic Sen. Jerry Ellis of Valliant.

Senator Ralph Shortey opposed the bill, saying he's concerned with government interfering in personal rights.