It’s about to be a primary offense to use a cell phone while driving in Lakewood

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LAKEWOOD, Ohio (WJW) -- A law making cell phone use while driving a primary offense goes into effect Tuesday in Lakewood.

Ohio Revised Code makes using a cell phone while driving a secondary offense, which means in order to be cited for the violation an officer would have to pull you over for another different violation, like speeding.

However, the city of Lakewood in September passed a local ordinance making it a primary offense within their city limits, meaning Lakewood officers can pull over a driver and issue a citation just for using a phone while driving.

The ordinance covers a vast majority of uses for a cell phone including texting, using social media and even holding the phone to your ear to talk.

There are exceptions such as one touch acceptance of a fare for Uber or Lyft drivers, one touch navigation and commercial truck drivers who have a terminal in their cab.  Otherwise, any use of a cell phone that takes two hands off of the wheel is a violation.

"It's fine if you can make a phone call from a one touch system on a mounted device or through a voice activated system or on an onboard system, but if you have your phone out in your hand and you are dialing or holding your phone up to your ear while driving those are things that we want to avoid,"  Lakewood council President Sam O'Leary, who proposed the law, previously said.

To read the full ordinance, click here. 

Continuing coverage. 

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