ATLANTA (AP) — Pending the governor's signature, Georgia will soon become the 16th state in the U.S. to enact a hands-free driving law.

The House gave final passage Thursday night to a proposal that would prevent drivers from holding their cellphones while behind the wheel.

Proponents say drivers who look at their phones are largely responsible for a recent spike in fatal crashes in Georgia — and the resulting rise in auto insurance premiums.

Under the bill, first-time offenders would be fined $50, with the fees increasing for repeat offenders.

First-time offenders could avoid the fine by appearing in court with proof that they have purchased a hands-free device.

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.