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Hands-free bill approved by Massachusetts House of Representatives

CHICOPEE, Mass (WWLP) - The Massachusetts House of Representatives has approved a bill to keep your cell phone out of your hands while driving.

Under the bill, drivers can only use one hand to swipe or tap their phone to activate or deactivate the hands-free mode. Once that is done, the phone must remain out of your hands while driving.

Phones cannot be used for social media or video calls when behind the wheel.

For the first offense, drivers will be fined $100-dollars, $250-dollars for the second offense, and $500 for every violation after that.

The bill requires police officers to note the race of every individual they stop for using their phone behind the wheel. 

The public safety secretary will review that data regularly, and if they notice a pattern of racial profiling, they will require data collection for all traffic stops and offer racial sensitivity training courses.

The exception for using your hands to make a call would be in an emergency, like dialing 911. 

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