City of Tempe bans texting while driving

Distracted driving continues to be a big problem. A new study by the AAA Foundation says even using voice commands on your phone to text is dangerous, it takes a driver up to 27 seconds to return their full attention to the road.

A valley city is putting a ban on texting while driving, and the new law takes effect Friday.

Lourdes Robertson always looks twice before crossing the street.

"I've almost been run over by people that are texting and driving, they look up, and all of a sudden you're crossing in the cross walk and we see that quite often," said Lourdes Robertson.

Things are about to change in Tempe where Robertson and her friends work. A ban on texting and driving is taking effect.

"We looked at our accidents, we looked at things that are happening, it was something we realized needed to be done," said Lt. Mike Pooley.

Pooley says technically drivers can still text or check social media while driving, but if an officer sees them driving erratically, they will be pulled over.

"Whether it's weaving in and out of lanes, running a stop light, some type of driving behavior that indicates something is wrong. You can be intoxicated, or looking at your phone, if we stop you at that point and find out you were texting then at that point yes you will be cited," said Pooley.

The ban already seems to be getting a lot of support from people of all ages, hoping that Tempe will now be safe.

"I think it's rediculous that we even allow a phone in the car in the first place, cars are a deadly weapon, and they're not thought of that, they're an extreme responsibility," said Gloria Morrell.

The texting while driving ban in Tempe takes effect today. Officers have a 90 day grace period, and they can start issuing tickets on January 22.

If you're ticketed, the first offense cost $100, the second $250, and any additional can be $500 or more.