State officials will gather at Annapolis High School on Oct. 1 for an open forum on new state laws affecting all Maryland drivers taking effect that day.
Speakers will include Anne Arundel Police Chief Kevin Davis, Wilson H. Parran, Deputy Secretary of Maryland Department of Transportation, state delegate James E. Malone Jr., and Tom Didone, a parent of a teen who died driving without a seatbelt.
These and others will speak with Annapolis High students about the dangers of distracted driving as part of Maryland's Toward Zero Deaths initiative, according to a press release.
Based on a new state law that goes into effect Oct. 1, drivers caught driving while using a handheld cellphone can be fined $75 for a first-time offense, up from $40 under current law, but more for subsequent violations. The ticket carries no points unless it contributed to an accident.
Driving while talking on a handheld cellphone was already against state law, but it was a secondary offense, meaning police could only ticket a driver for it if the driver was committing a primary offense, such as speeding.