SACRAMENTO, CA --- California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has signed legislation that prohibits all drivers in the state from using text messaging devices while they drive.

The legislation includes writing, sending and reading text messages while behind the wheel.

"Banning electronic text messaging while driving will keep drivers' hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road, making our roadways a safer place for all Californians," Schwarzenegger said.

The new law will take effect in January of 2009. Drivers caught text messaging while behind the wheel will receive a $20 fine for the first offense, and a $50 fine for each additional offense.

The legislation was proposed by Senator Joe Simitian (D-Palo Alto). Other states with similar laws include Louisiana, Minnesota, New Jersey, Connecticut and Washington.