WJTV News Channel 12 - New law makes texting and driving primary offense

New law makes texting and driving primary offense

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ROANOKE -

Starting Monday, July 1, 2013 a new law will make texting and driving a primary offense.

This will beef up current laws which include texting while driving as only a secondary offense.

According to the National Safety Institute more than 100,000 car accidents each year are caused by texting drivers.

Now drivers who weren't deterred by the possibility of an accident while texting, may change their minds if it impacts their wallets.

According to the Virginia DMV,  a person convicted of texting while driving will receive a $125 fine for the first offense and a $250 fine for subsequent charges. A much steeper penalty than the original $25.

The new law also increases the penalties for a person convicted for reckless driving to include a mandatory $250 fine if the person was texting while driving recklessly.

For now, this law will not effect hand-held device users while driving in Virginia.

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