Pa. House softens proposed ban on cellphone use while driving

Tony Romeo
January 15, 2020 - 4:00 am

HARRISBURG, Pa. (KYW Newsradio) — The state House has voted to tone down a proposed ban on the use of cellphones while driving.

The state House Tuesday debated and voted on amendments to a bill that would ban the use of cellphones behind the wheel, and one amendment that passed would change it from a primary offense to a secondary offense, similar to state law requiring the use of seat belts. 

That means drivers could only be cited if stopped by police for a primary offense. Among those advocating for the change was Democrat Jordan Harris of Philadelphia.
"I don’t think we should be giving more reasons for people to be pulled over in our Commonwealth when we’re not collecting the data, the racial demographics," he said. 

The sponsor of the bill, meanwhile, warned that the amendment would also weaken existing law by turning texting while driving from the current primary offense to a secondary offense for adult drivers. The bill in its amended form needs another full House vote before it can go to the Senate for consideration.