LANSING — Today, the Michigan House of Representatives passed House Bill 4181, sponsored by state Rep. Mari Manoogian (D-Birmingham), which would ban any driver under the age of 18 from using a cell phone while driving. Currently, the law only applies to individuals with learner’s permits or restricted licenses.

“This is a matter of life and death,” said Manoogian. “Every year, distracted driving causes thousands of crashes in our state, resulting in preventable injuries and loss of life. As lawmakers, it is up to us to enact laws that keep Michiganders safe and this bill does just that. Our young drivers are the most vulnerable to accidents and we need to do everything we can to protect them.”

Manoogian’s bill defines cell phone use as the act of initiating a call, answering a call or engaging in verbal communication through a phone and bans distracted driving. The law would not apply to individuals who are reporting accidents or other emergencies.