By Michelle Donati
Governor Doug Ducey signed a bill into law today that will help make Arizona roads safer for everyone. This action by the governor concludes AAA’s decade long effort to address distracted driving in Arizona.
Under the new law, Arizona drivers will be prohibited from using a handheld cell phone while driving, except for when stopped or in emergency situations.
“Laws reflect the values of society, and we know the overwhelming majority of drivers believe using a phone to make a call, send a text message or look at social media behind the wheel is unacceptable,” said Michelle Donati, spokeswoman for AAA Arizona. “On behalf of more than 900,000 Members across the state, AAA Arizona would like to thank Gov. Ducey for recognizing the need for this life-saving legislation.”
Law enforcement officers can issue warnings to motorists immediately; and will begin issuing citations for a violation of the law beginning in January 2021, allowing motorists ample time to adjust their driving behaviors. A first-time offense for breaking the primary law will result in a fine of between $75 and $149. Fines for subsequent violations increase to $250.
AAA Arizona is appreciative of Senate President Karen Fann, Senator Kate Brophy McGee, Speaker Rusty Bowers, Representative Noel Campbell, as well as the bipartisan support of legislators who supported this bill.
“It’s time we take a statewide approach to this issue,” said Rep. Campbell, who successfully guided the legislation through the Arizona House of Representatives. “In doing so, we’re alleviating confusion by ensuring all drivers operate under the same rules.”
“This is a great day for Arizona,” said Senator Brophy McGree, who authored the legislation in the Arizona Senate. “We’ve lost far too many lives as a result of this public health crisis. This law plays a critical role in making Arizona roads safer for everyone.”
Earlier this year, a poll commissioned by AAA Arizona and the Arizona Property Casualty Insurance Association revealed 83 percent of Arizona voters across all ages, regions, and partisan segments overwhelmingly supported this legislation.
About AAA Arizona
AAA has a proud history of serving Members for over 100 years. AAA is on a mission to create Members for life by unleashing the innovative spirit of 4,000 employees representing nearly 6 million Members across Northern California, Arizona, Utah, Nevada, Montana, Wyoming and Alaska. In addition to legendary roadside assistance, AAA offers home, auto and life insurance, and extraordinary travel services. According to Via Magazine’s Smart Guide, being a AAA Member can save you more than $1,200 a year. Learn more at AAA.com.