SAN ANTONIO – City council members unanimously voted Thursday to approve a ban on hand-held cell phone use while driving.

The ordinance bans drivers from using a hand-held phone to make a phone call, check text messages, view pictures or any other type of cell phone use while driving.

That includes using your phone as a GPS device while on the road.  The only exception to the GPS stipulation would be if you are using a GPS device that is attached inside your car.

Drivers are allowed to use their phones if they are using a hands-free device such as bluetooth or if they are calling 911 to report an emergency.

The hand-held cell phone ban goes into effect January 1, 2015.  Drivers caught using their phones face a $200 fine.

According to a presentation given by San Antonio Police Chief Bill McManus, distracted driving was the cause in more than 90,000 crashes across the state of Texas in 2013.

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