Hands-free cellphone bill before Mass. Senate — again

BOSTON (AP) — Should Massachusetts continue to allow motorists to hold their cellphones and drive at the same time?

The answer from senators on Thursday is likely to be no. The Senate is scheduled to take up a bill that would allow for cellphone use in hands-free mode only when behind the wheel.

The Senate has approved similar legislation, aimed at curtailing distracted driving, in past years but it has yet to come up for a final vote in the House. That could change this time around with Speaker Robert DeLeo having indicated a willingness to bring it to the floor for debate.

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Prohibitions on hand-held cellphone use by drivers are in place in all of Massachusetts’ neighboring states.

Massachusetts does ban texting while driving and all cellphone use by drivers under 18.