Handling a phone while driving could become illegal in Michigan

LANSING, Mich. (WILX) -- Starting Friday, handling a phone while driving will be made illegal in Battle Creek and Michigan might be following suit.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer brought up the idea of making it illegal in Michigan to use a phone while behind the wheel during her State of the State Address earlier this week.

A bill to do just that was introduced in the State House by Rep. Mari Manoogian, D-Birmingham on Wednesday.

Michigan currently has a distracted driving law making it illegal to text and drive.

This new bill would ban drivers from holding their phone while making calls, reading a text, posting to social media and so on, but drivers can still use their GPS and talk into a mounted phone as long as they're not physically holding it while driving.

Under the legislation, it would be a $100 fine for the first time anyone is caught using their phone while driving.

The fine increases to $250 for the second offense.

Drivers who caused a crash while on a phone would face double fines and could lose their license for up to 90 days for multiple offenses.

The bill is heading to the House Committee on Transportation for review.

If the law is approved, Michigan would be the 17th state with a hands-free driving law.