MLAs closer to banning use of electronic devices while driving
Wednesday, June 8, 2011 - 8:27 AM
Yellowknife, N.W.T. - The GNWT is poised to pass its first distracted driving legislation, which would see people penalized for using cell phones and other electronic devices behind the wheel.
Several Yellowknife MLAs have been calling for the law for years and have struggled to get others to agree.
In the fall of 2009, the idea was put to a vote in the Legislature, where only four MLAs voted in favour of a law on distracted driving.
Wendy Bisaro said the behaviour reminds her of something else.
“I liken it to drunk driving, when drunk driving was first considered to be an inappropriate behaviour, it started slow,” she said. “There was a major awareness campaign, legislation then came into place, it’s taken a really long time, but drunk driving is now not acceptable.”
If passed, the amended Motor Vehicles Act would make it an offence to drive while using an electronic device, including cell phones, smart phones and MP3 players, but not a hands-free device used in a hands-free manner.
The bill is set to go before the House in August ahead of the fall territorial election.
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