COLUMBUS —  The Ohio House unanimously approved two pieces of legislation Thursday aimed at protecting drivers.

House Bill 51 from Rep. Timothy E. Ginter, R-Salem, would require the Ohio Department of Transportation to install center-line rumble strips on all two-lane highways that have a speed limit of more than 45 miles per hour.

Ginter introduced the legislation in response to a pair of fatal head-on collisions on rural highways in his district.

“At a time when distracted driving is at an all-time high and increasing, center-line rumble sticks are not only necessary, they seem to be long overdue,” Ginter told his colleagues before their 95-0 vote.

Rumble strips are narrow areas of raised or depressed road surface that cause a sharp vibration and rumbling inside a vehicle to notify drivers that coming road conditions require them to slow down or that they have drifted out of their lane.

Under the bill, the strips, costing $700 to $1,025 per mile, would be installed during future construction or repair work.

Ginter said there were more than 1,300 collisions last year involving vehicles crossing the center line on undivided state routes in Ohio, 70 of them fatal.

The rumble strips, he said, are “an effective counter measure to crossing the center line and effective to save lives.”

The House also approved by a vote of 94-0 a bill that would allow motorcyclists to wear earphones or earplugs for hearing protection.

House Bill 129 sponsor Rep. Riordan T. McClain, R-Upper Sandusky, said the bill is about “safety and freedom.”

It’s currently a misdemeanor to wear earphones or earplugs while operating any motor vehicle with some exceptions, including law enforcement officers and drivers with hearing aids. The bill would add motorcycle riders to the list of exemptions.

“Riders are subject to conditions that without fail will cause hearing loss unless preventative measures are taken,” McClain said.

“The cause of those harmful conditions is not what you are thinking. It’s not the engine noise,” he said. “It’s the cumulative effect of wind noise that is so dangerous to motorcycle riders.”

Both bills move to the Senate.