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The CHP is Ready to Crack Down on DWT Offenders

Audio

Aired 4/19/09

It's known as D.W.T or driving while texting. And starting Thursday, it's officially illegal in California. The California Highway Patrol is already geared up to enforce the new law. Jaime Coffee is with the CHP. She says it's a primary offense. That means officers can pull drivers over if they see them texting - even if they're at a stop sign:

Coffee: "There is no grace period at least from our point of view. We're going to begin enforcing January 1, and it's because the bottom line is texting and driving does not mix. People need to devote 100 percent of their attention to the safe operation of the vehicle."

Laws that went into effect in 2008 already made it illegal to use a hand-held cell phone while driving - or for those under 18 to text. Now the texting ban is expanded to include all drivers.

Other new driving laws taking effect in 2009 include several cracking down on repeat drunk-drivers. There's also one that allows drivers to mount navigational devices - known as G-P-S - on certain parts of their windshields. Previously, that was illegal.

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