June 11 at 9:18 PM
TENNESSEE (Heartland News at 9) - A new law that will ban the use of cell phones while driving in Tennessee starts on July 1.
Governor Bill Lee signed the bill into law on May 24.
Violators will face a fine up to $100 and if the violation causes an accident the cost could increase to $200.
The law was first introduced by state representative John Holsclaw, Jr. (R-Elizabethton) and was originally meant to take effect in 2020. The bill passed the house on April 17 with a 53-38 vote with an amendment to take effect July 1.
It then passed the Senate with a vote of 23-7 and was signed by the governor.
Currently, there are 16 states that have similar laws including the District of Columbia.
At this point, handheld cell phones use is only banned in school zones.
Law enforcement officers, emergency responders and utility works will be exempt from the new law.