New law will ban teens from texting while driving

JACKSON, MS (AP) - Starting July 1, a new Mississippi law will ban some teens from sending text messages while driving.

Anyone with an intermediate license or learner's permit caught texting while driving could face a misdemeanor charge and a fine of up to $500. If there's an accident while someone is texting, the fine would be up to $1,000.

The law - signed this past week by Gov. Haley Barbour - also will add six months to the minimum age for teenagers to get their driver's licenses. The intermediate license, allowing some unsupervised driving, will become available at 16. An unrestricted license can be obtained six months later.

The bill is Senate Bill 2280.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.