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South Bend city council approves hands-free cellphone ordinance while driving

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SOUTH BEND, Ind. – If you drive through South Bend, you’ll have to put your phone down or you may have to pay up.

The city council approved an ordinance that bans electronic devices – unless they’re hands-free – while you’re behind the wheel, WSBT reports.

That means no calling, no texting, and no taking pictures. This applies even if you come to a stop sign or if you’re stopped at a red light.

Your car has to be in park before you touch your phone, or you could face a $75 fine for the first offense.

The second offense will cost you $150, and more offenses are $250.

You can still use your phone for GPS, voice to text, or Bluetooth through your car—just as long as you don’t have to touch your phone.

Mayor Pete Buttigieg still needs to sign the ordinance.

For the most part, Indiana’s distracted driving law is not nearly as strict.

Drivers are allowed to talk on their phone while driving (unless they’re younger than 21), although, texting and emailing isn’t allowed.

Indiana lawmakers looked at a hands-free cellphone bill during the last legislative session, but it didn’t pass.

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