The Bismarck Board of City Commissioners passed a Prohibition of Texting While Driving ordinance (12-09-46) at their meeting on October 26, 2010. The ordinance became effective immediately.
In order to provide for proper notification and education of the public on the existence of this ordinance, officers will issue verbal or written warnings for violations of this ordinance prior to November 15. After this date, officers may issue citations for violations of this ordinance. A violation of this ordinance is a “primary offense,” which means officers can pull a vehicle over specifically for a violation of this ordinance.
The ordinance prohibits a driver of a motor vehicle from using a wireless communication device to read, view, write, compose or send an “electronic message” (electronic text, electronic images) or “electronic information” (e-mail, text messaging and internet access) while operating a motor vehicle. There are exceptions listed in the ordinance, which is posted on the City of Bismarck web site at www.bismarck.org, where it can be read in its entirety.
The fine for a violation of this ordinance is $50.00. There will be no drivers license points assessed for a violation of this ordinance.
Enforcement of this traffic offense is aimed at keeping all drivers on the road safe by reducing the number of distractions drivers encounter.