Senate Votes To Ban Texting And Driving
Oelslager Co-sponsors Measure
Columbus - 
Senator Scott Oelslager (R- North Canton) today joined his colleagues in the Ohio Senate in approving a statewide ban on text while driving. House Bill 99, sponsored by Representatives Rex Damschroder (R- Fremont) and Nancy Garland (D- New Albany), makes texting while driving a secondary offense, while including exemptions for emergency and navigational purposes. "Texting while driving - and indeed any activity that takes the driver's attention away from the road - not only puts the driver at risk, but the vehicles and pedestrians around them as well," Oelslager said. The Senate added a provision to the House proposal that prohibits minors from using any handheld electronic wireless communications device, such as a phone, tablet or PDA to write, send or read a text-based message. The bill allows 16- and 17-year-olds to use a mobile device only in cases of emergency. According to statistics received by the Ohio Senate, a March 2012 AAA study noted that teen crash rates are roughly four times higher than those of an adult driver and traffic crashes remain the leading cause of death for teens. The same study also found that use of electronic devices was the most common distracted driving behavior amongst teen drivers, causing them to look away from the roadway, on average, for a full second longer than drivers not using such a device. In addition, an MSNBC report in January found that eight teen drivers die every day due to distracted driving.
State Senator Scott Oelslager represents the 29th District for the Ohio Senate, which includes portions of Stark County. His office can be reached at (614) 466-0626 or at
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