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Cell Phone Safety

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How dangerous is it to use a cell phone while driving? A new bill under consideration at the State Capitol could provide some answers.

The state Assembly has passed legislation that would require officers to include information about the use or abuse of cellular phones in automobile accident reports. Officers would even need to note if a cell phone was present in the car, even if it wasn't being used at the time of the accident.

A crash last year near Lodi is a good example of how distracting and dangerous it can be to talk and drive at the same time. A teenage driver crashed her car while trying to hang up her phone. She was killed and her passenger was critically injured.

CHP officers say cell phone use is just one of many things distracting drivers nowadays. "People can actually have personal computers. They can set up printers. People are drinking coffee. People are eating," said CHP Officer Max Hartley.

If the bill does become law, the statistics from accident reports would be studied by the Office of Traffic Safety. The results would be used for a variety of purposes, including framing future cell phone laws.

(This story was provided by News10 KXTV Sacramento.)

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