Greer, Simpsonville discuss distracted driving bans - FOX Carolina 21

Greer, Simpsonville discuss distracted driving bans

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Texting while driving and other electronic use could be banned in more Upstate cities. (File/FOX Carolina) Texting while driving and other electronic use could be banned in more Upstate cities. (File/FOX Carolina)
GREER, SC (FOX Carolina) -

Two Upstate city councils discussed potential distracted driving bans at their meetings on Tuesday night, and it was struck down in one city.

Both the Simpsonville and Greer city councils met to discuss banning some form of electronic device use in vehicles. Both cities' discussions follow Greenville's distracted driving ban that went into effect April 1.

Simpsonville City Council unanimously struck down the idea of the ban after it was brought to the council by Mayor Perry Eichor at Tuesday's meeting.

In Greer, after a suggestion for an ordinance that would ban texting while driving was made, a law was drafted and it passed the first vote at Tuesday's meeting.

According to a March 26 memo from the city's municipal clerk, Tammy Duncan, to city administrator Ed Driggers, court and police officials helped in the process of drafting the ordinance, which was also reviewed by the city's attorney, John Duggan, for his recommendations.

The main tenets of the ordinance would:

  • Make it illegal to drive while sending text messages, reading text messages, reading electronic media or emailing;
  • Would allow police who stop a driver in violation to look at the phone to determine if the offense occurred at the time of the traffic stop;
  • And would be punishable by a $100 fine, 30 days in jail or both with court costs.

There are exceptions in the law, including the allowance of being stopped or lawfully parked, emergency situations, hands-free devices and installed GPS systems. Read the entire ordinance here.

A second reading is slated for April 22 for Greer's ordinance, which would go into effect July 1. The council is accepting public comment on the law.

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