SANTA FE – The New Mexico Senate has approved a proposal to prohibit texting while driving in the state.
Senators voted 37-5 on Friday on a bill that prohibits drivers – even while at a stop light – from sending or reading a text message and email. It also bans making an Internet search from cellphones or other hand-held wireless devices while behind the wheel.
The proposal calls for a $25 fine for a first violation and $50 for subsequent violations.
Sen. Peter Wirth, a Santa Fe Democrat who’s sponsored the measure, says the problem of distracted drivers has grown.
But State Senate Majority Leader Michael Sanchez says he was concerned that the bill would give police too much freedom to pull over motorists.
The proposal now goes to the House.