The Honolulu city council this week voted 7-2 to fine residents caught texting or using their mobile devices while crossing the street.
The legislation, which now heads to Mayor Kirk Caldwell for approval or veto, was conceived by a group of high school students, lawmakers said.
“These high school groups were concerned for their peers being distracted while crossing the streets and looking at their phones instead of looking both ways,” Councilman Brandon Elefante told CNN.
Violators would be subject to a fine of between $15 and $99, with the amount rising to a maximum of $500 for multiple offenses. The legislation the use of cellphones, tablets, handheld video games, digital cameras, pagers and laptops while walking in a public right-of-way.
Caldwell said he is evaluating the measure and has not decided whether he will sign it into law. The two lawmakers opposed said a public awareness campaign would have been a better solution that threatening fines for oblivious pedestrians.