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Utah bans teen drivers from cellphone use

The Associated Press


SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Utah teens who talk on the phone while driving will now face a $25 fine and a ticket.

A new law banning 16 and 17-year-olds from using cell phones behind the wheel takes effect Tuesday.

The law would exempt teens if they are calling parents. It would also exempt minors who are in an emergency or reporting a crime.

If teens get a ticket for driving and talking, that ticket would not count toward points on their driving records.

Nationally, over half of 16 and 17-year-olds who own cell phones say they have talked on the phone while driving, according to a 2009 study by the Pew Research center.

Lawmakers say they hope the fine will help teens adopt safer driving habits and encourage their parents to do the same.

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