BEAUFORT, S.C. -- Drivers in Beaufort County have been banned from texting while driving.

The Beaufort Gazette reported the county council unanimously approved the ban Monday.

The ordinance will be enforced by the sheriff’s office. Motorists asking for emergency service are exempt from the ban, as are emergency responders, sheriff’s deputies and EMS workers using electronic devices as part of their duties.

Violators could be charged with a misdemeanor and fined $100 for the first offense, $200 for a second offense and $300 for subsequent offenses.

In July, the Hilton Head Island Town Council banned drivers from composing, sending or reading electronic messages, such as texts or emails.

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Information from: The Beaufort Gazette, http://www.beaufortgazette.com