Ohio Prohibits Texting, Use of Gadgets By Under-18 Drivers

Ohio drivers who are under the age of 18 are not only banned from texting while driving but prohibited as well from using any mobile communications device while having their hands on the wheels.

The state’s House Bill 99 that imposes the said ban was signed into law by Governor John R. Kasich on June 1, 2012, and since August 31 is now being enforced.

The law not only prohibits the use of mobile phones but also included the use of iPad, tablet, handheld GPS and other mobile communication devices. This means that if you drive in Ohio, you are prohibited to text, e-mail, have phone calls even with the use of Bluetooth headset or speakers, and play video games while you are driving a vehicle even if you are sitting on a traffic jam or at a stop light. The use of hand-held GPS devices is also being prohibited unless it is a hands-free device or voice-activated.

The state had instituted corresponding penalties for non-adult drivers who would be caught violating this law. For drivers under the age of 18, first violation will cost the suspension of his or her driver’s license for 60 days and a fine of $150. Second offense will have a $300 fine and one year suspension of license.

As for adult drivers, violation of the said law will just be considered as a minor misdemeanor and will be compelled to pay a fine of up to $150.

The said law is being enforced as to prevent the hazards of using mobile communication devices especially texting as it takes a driver’s attention off the road.