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Chicago Fines Motorists for Cell Phone Use

May 18, 2005

The Chicago City Council on Wednesday voted to ban motorists from using cell phones in their hands while driving, according to a May 12 report in the Chicago Tribune.Starting July 8, motorists caught talking on a cell phone while in motion will face a $50 fine. The penalty will jump to $200 in cases where cell phone conversations cause accidents.Drivers will still be allowed to use a cell phone as long as they use a speakerphone, earbud or other device that allows them to keep both hands on the wheel.Chicago becomes the second major U.S. city after Washington to approve such a measure. There also are statewide prohibitions against driving while gripping cell phones in New York and New Jersey.Sprint and Verizon Wireless opposed the measure, but Mayor Richard Daley said he was for it, the report says.
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