Banning the use of hand - held cell phones while driving took another step closer to becoming reality in Maine yesterday.

In a 24-10 vote, the Maine Senate approved bill LD 185, which would make it illegal to talk on a hand-held cell phone while driving.

The bill will now move along to the Maine House for further consideration.

Senator Roger Katz, a Republican from Augusta is sponsoring the bill.  Yesterday he said, "We can't deal with every possible safety issue here, but the evidence is so clear that this is a major cause of many, many collisions, and we can do something about it."

If the bill is passed, driving while using any sort of hand-held cell device, while moving, will be a crime.  You'd get a $50 fine for the first offense, and a person convicted more than once would receive a minimum fine of $250.