Bill Strengthening Ohio Distracted Driving Laws Signed

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has signed Senate Bill 288, which significantly strengthens laws related to the use of cell phones and other electronic devices while driving, including a wide ban on using and holding a phone while driving.

The new law makes distracted driving a primary offense.

“In most circumstances law enforcement will now be able to immediately stop any driver seen manipulating a device instead of focusing on the road,” DeWine said.

Under the new law, a driver may still use their device in specific circumstances, such as when their vehicle is parked or stopped at a red light.

Drivers are also permitted to swipe their phones to answer a call and to hold their phones to their ears during phone conversations.

Emergency calls are also permitted in all circumstances.