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Senator wants more cellphone restrictions for drivers

INDIANAPOLIS, (WISH) – A state lawmaker is looking to take some of the danger off of Indiana’s roads.

State Senator Pete Miller wants to make it illegal to use a cellphone while driving.

“The idea is if you’re behind the wheel, you should be focused on that road,” said Sen. Pete Miller.

The National Safety Council says one in four crashes on American roadways are caused by someone using a cellphone.

“I’ve seen cars swerving and I’ll come up next to them and they’re even on the phone or texting,” said Brooke Faust while walking in downtown Indianapolis.

State law already bans adults from texting and emailing while driving.

“So we know it makes a difference, but for some reason we only apply that to new drivers and not adults when obviously there’s an impact on adults as well,” said Sen. Miller

He says he knows that from personal experience.

“I was driving to work on Dec. 2 and trying to dial a number,” the republican from Avon said.

That morning INDOT was surprised by an overnight ice storm. It left many of the highways untreated, leading to numerous accidents.

“We hit an overpass and before I knew it I was at a 45 degree angle. I over-corrected and went down an embankment and I totaled my car,” said Miller.

He admits the likelihood of this passing and becoming law is very slim, but says what he wants to do is start a conversation so people know exactly how dangerous this can be.

“You are operated a two-ton machine that can cause some damage. Any distraction poses a threat both to you and to others,” Miller said.

While many states have similar bans on the books, some still question how dangerous using cell phones are while driving. The National Safety Council says a driver on their phone has a slower reaction time than a person with a .08 blood alcohol content, the legal intoxication limit.