On September 24, 2008, California Governor Schwarzenegger signed bill S.B. 28 into law, banning drivers from reading, writing or sending a text message while driving in a vehicle beginning January 1, 2009.
The bill would impose a base fine of $20 for a first offense and $50 for any subsequent violation, but no violation point will be assigned to the driver’s license.
As he signed the bill, Schwarzenegger said, “Banning electronic text messaging while driving will keep drivers’ hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road, making our roadways a safer place for all Californians…Building on legislation already helping save lives in California, I am happy to sign this bill because it further encourages safe and responsible driving.”
Since July, drivers in California have been prohibited from using handheld wireless telephones while driving, unless the devices are configured to allow hands-free listening and talking, and drivers under age 18 are not allowed to use any electronic devices.