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Texting while driving will be punished more harshly, says Cuomo

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Governor Andrew Cuomo says he'll introduce a bill to crack down on texting while driving, with new punishments and penalties. Karen DeWitt reports.

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Karen DeWitt
NYS Capitol Correspondent

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The governor says the bill would penalize drivers who use Blackberries, I-Phones, I-Pads or other portable electronic devices while driving by adding three points on a driver’s licenses if they are caught.

And it would be more likely that drivers would be stopped, because the measure would make texting while driving a primary, rather than a secondary offense. That would  permit police to pull over drivers if they suspect they are using their portable devices to text on the road.

Cuomo, in a statement says distracted driving is a “lethal activity.”

for drivers and their passengers, other people in their cars and pedestrians. He cites National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports which find texting while driving may be a factor in as many as 16% of fatal accidents, and 20% of crashes resulting in injuries.

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