Ordinance Banning the use of Communication Devices and Texting While Driving

On April 22, 2014 the Coconino County Board of Supervisors adopted Ordinance No 2014-03 - Regulation of Portable Communication Devices While Operating a Motor Vehicle. The ordinance prohibits a motor vehicle operator from using a portable communications device while driving unless they are using a hands-free mobile device. On June 24, the Board approved Ordinance No. 2014-09, which amends the previous ordinance.
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For a set of frequently asked questions (FAQs) visit here.

To read a signed copy of the ordinance, visit here.

Ordinance Overview (as passed April 22)

Multiple studies have shown motorists operating portable communication devices such as cell phones and/or texting while driving are statistically more likely to become involved in a traffic accident. To promote and encourage safety and decrease distracted driving, the County ordinance states:

“A person shall not drive a motor vehicle while using a portable communications device to engage in a call unless that device is configured to allow hand-free listening and talking, and is used exclusively in that manner while driving. Texting and typing are banned while operating a motor vehicle.”

Exemptions from the ordinance include:

  • The driver uses a hands-free mobile device.
  • The purpose of the call is to communicate an emergency to a police or fire department, a hospital or physician’s office, or an ambulance corps.
  • Operating an authorized law enforcement or emergency vehicle in the performance of official duties.
  • A person who holds a valid amateur radio operator license issued by or any license issued by the Federal Communications Commission or the driver uses a two-way radio, such as a CB radio.
  • A person is driving a motor vehicle on private property.
  • A driver has pulled off of the traveled portion of the roadway in a safe and legal location and placed the vehicle in park in order to operate a handheld portable communications device.
  • Persons driving a school bus or transit vehicle that is subject to Arizona Revised Statutes or U.S. Department of Transportation regulations.


A person found to be in violation of this ordinance and not involved in a motor vehicle crash is subject to a civil penalty of $100 plus any other penalty assessment authorized by law. A driver found in violation of the ordinance and involved in a collision is subject to a $250 fine and any other penalty assessments authorized by law.