You are here

Table 2-25: State Laws on Distracted Driving- Ban on Hand-Held Devices and Texting While Driving: As of June 2015

Excel | CSV

State AL AK AZ AR CA CO CT DE DC FL GA HI ID IL IN IA KS KY LA ME MD MA MI MN MS MO MT NE NV NH NJ NM NY NC ND OH OK OR PA RI SC SD TN TX UT VT VA WA WV WI WY PR Total
Ban on hand-held devices for all drivers       Y Y   Y Y Y     Y   Y             Y               Y Y Y   Y         Y               Y   Y Y     Y 17
Ban on texting for all drivers Y Y   Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y       Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y   Y Y Y Y Y Y   Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y 46

NOTES

A primary law means that an officer can ticket the driver for the offense without any other traffic violation taking place. A secondary law means an officer can only issue a ticket if a driver has been pulled over for another violation (like speeding).

Hand-held Cell Phone Use: 14 states, D.C., Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands prohibit all drivers from using hand-held cell phones while driving. All are primary enforcement laws—an officer may cite a driver for using a hand-held cell phone without any other traffic offense taking place.

Text Messaging: Washington was the first state to pass a texting ban in 2007. Currently, 46 states, D.C., Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands ban text messaging for all drivers. All but 5 have primary enforcement. Of the 4 states without an all driver texting ban:

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, State Laws on Distracted Driving, available at http://www.distraction.gov/stats-research-laws/state-laws.html as of June 10, 2015.