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Cell phone law goes into effect

No more grace period. No more warnings — unless you’re lucky.

Beginning Sunday, motorists caught driving in Nevada while texting or talking on a cell phone will face traffic tickets. The first offense will run $50, the second $100.

Get caught again and you’re looking at $250 plus court costs.

Many states now have restrictions on cell phone use while driving — although only nine states prohibit the practice entirely. The Nevada law still allows for the use of hands-free devices.

Proponents of the ban argue that using the phones constitutes a distraction that creates dangers on the road. And that’s hard to dispute. But why has this lone behavior been singled out?

What about eating while driving? Applying make-up? Reading the newspaper? Changing the radio station? Dealing with unruly children while attempting to navigate the mall parking lot?

All these distractions can cause accidents. And, in fact, laws on the books already exist that make it illegal to recklessly operate a motor vehicle – for whatever reason.

Nevertheless, some high-profile accidents involving cell phone use led lawmakers to act.

The law may indeed be duplicative. But the fact remains that the best way to arrive at your destination safely is to avoid all distractions to the greatest extent possible. And that means putting the phone away until you’re no longer behind the wheel, potentially affecting other drivers.

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