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Proposal Bans Snacking, Smoking Behind the Wheel

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    NEWSLETTERS

    It's called Nikki's Law and the new law, named for a Washington Township, N.J. teen who died in a car crash, will alert drivers not to text and drive. (Published Thursday, Jun 20, 2013)

    Drivers could possibly be pulled over for snacking, smoking or putting on make-up behind the wheel under a bill that has been advanced in the New Jersey Assembly.

    The proposed law would fine drivers found to “engage in any activity unrelated to the operation of a motor vehicle in a manner that interferes with the safe operation of the vehicle.”

    The bill advanced by a 12-0 vote Monday in the Assembly's transportation committee. It does not spell out which activities would and would not be considered distracted driving, instead leaving that determination up to police.

    New Jersey National Motorists Association representative Steve Carrellas tells The Star-Ledger that the proposal is too vague.

    "I can’t adjust the radio anymore? I can’t change the CD? I can’t look at a map?" he told the paper. "This is a whole set of undefined behavior that someone could perform in the car that could be considered not driving."

    The bill has not been introduced in the state Senate.