BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - The Louisiana House has backed a prohibition on the use of hand-held cell phones while driving.
Similar proposals have failed in recent years to gain traction with the Legislature. But New Orleans Rep. Austin Badon's proposal passed in a 59-29 vote Wednesday.
Debate on the idea shifts to the Senate.
Badon, a Democrat, says he proposed the bill as a safety measure. Drivers could use a hands-free device to talk on the phone behind the wheel.
Critics say cell phones aren't any more dangerous than things like drinking coffee while driving, eating while driving or reading the newspaper while driving.
Louisiana currently has a ban on texting while driving and a prohibition on younger drivers using cell phones.
House Bill 695 can be found at www.legis.state.la.us