Florida attempts once again to ban texting while driving

Over the years, Florida lawmakers have tried to successfully ban texting while driving, to no avail. As another Legislative session opens, another bill is being presented to the House and Senate.

As per House Bill 299, sponsored by Rep. Ray Pilon, and Senate Bill 416, sponsored Sen. Nancy Detert, drivers would be prohibited from ““manually typing or entering multiple letters, numbers, symbols or other characters into a wireless communications device for the purpose of non-voice interpersonal communication, including, but not limited to, communication methods known as texting, e-mailing and instant messaging.” Both laws would be secondary enforcement, meaning police officers would need to cite motorists for another infraction before pulling them over for texting while driving. Being caught texting while driving would mean adding up to 6 points against a driver’s license.

Similar measures to outlaw texting while driving were presented during the last Legislative session, but both failed to be adopted in the House or Senate.

For AAA spokeswoman Brenda Smith, who is pushing Florida to adopt a texting ban, there is still work to do before Florida lawmakers understand the dangers of texting while driving.

“We really need to educate not only the public but we also need to educate our legislators so we can take this and implement a law that’s actually going to ban this,” she said.

Source: Fox 13, October 7, 2011; WPBF, October 10, 2011

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