New laws take effect Tuesday, including texting while driving ban

Reported by Gavin Johnson - bio|email
Posted by Kristy Ondo - email

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WECT) - Jevon Koosee loves the way his truck looks, but come Tuesday, he'll have to make a change to the back of his vehicle. His license plate frame must come down.

"It came with the car actually," said Koosee. "When I bought the car, it had Jeff Gordon on it. You can't see it because it's washed off. I left it on there because I thought it looked cool."

Starting December 1, authorities will begin enforcing a new law, aimed at making license plates and tags more legible.

"If a cover is over the license plate, month sticker, year sticker, or the part that reads 'State of North Carolina' at the bottom...then you will be pulled over," said Sgt. Michael Collier with the North Carolina Highway Patrol.

According to Sgt. Collier, drivers will be given warnings until November of next year. Then, officers will start handing out fines. 

Another law that goes into effect Tuesday seeks to eliminate the dangers of texting while driving.  Your car must be in park before you send a text message.

"We've got enough distractions as it is now. You don't need to be trying to send a message or type an email while driving," said Sgt. Collier.
Anyone caught breaking that law will have to pay for a ticket and a court fee, which will cost more than $200.

Like many drivers, Koosee is in favor of the new law. "Texting you got to look down, how can you drive and look down at the same time? You're putting other people in jeopardy."

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