Verizon Wireless Endorses Simitian Responsible Driving Legislation In California

SACRAMENTO, CA — In a news conference held here today by State Assemblyman Joseph Simitian, Verizon Wireless pledged its support for his proposed bill on the use of hand held cellular phones in automobiles.

Verizon Wireless has educated millions of customers on the responsible use of mobile devices in motor vehicles and demonstrated its commitment to keeping costs for hands-free devices affordable. Wireless phones have assisted emergency personnel in saving lives as they respond to over 100,000 emergency calls each day in the United States through cellular devices.

Testifying in 30 states, Verizon Wireless has broken ranks with the wireless industry to support statewide legislation that preserves a hands-free option. The following may be attributed to Michael Bagley, director of Public Policy, Verizon Wireless:

"Verizon Wireless supports statewide legislation that preserves a hands-free option, explicitly exempts emergency calls, recognizes the safety benefits of wireless technologies and assesses penalties no greater than other driving infractions. We also advocate a 'phase-in-period.' California Assemblyman Joseph Simitian's bill has our support because it includes all of those elements. We commend him for his leadership on this issue.

"Verizon Wireless will continue its education efforts, which include educational kits to teach new drivers about wireless safety behind the wheel, and its work with vendors to promote hand-free technologies that enable drivers to keep both hands on the wheel."

About Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless is the nation's leading provider of wireless communications. The company has the largest nationwide wireless voice and data network and 32.5 million customers. Headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at