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Panel Supports Bill to Combat Distracted Driving in Georgia


With Georgia experiencing a spike in both fatal crashes and auto insurance premiums, legislators advanced a proposal to make it illegal to hold a cellphone while driving.

A House committee on Wednesday voted in favor of a bill by Republican Rep. John Carson of Marietta.

In Georgia, it is illegal to text behind the wheel, but drivers are allowed to dial and hold their phone behind the wheel. Law enforcement officers say they often cannot tell whether a driver is texting or merely dialing, making it difficult for them to enforce the law.

Under the bill, drivers would still be allowed to use GPS navigation and talk via a hands-free device.

Using a hand-held cellphone while driving has been banned in 15 states, as well as the District of Columbia.