Another state is being added to the list of areas where drivers are no longer allowed to text message behind the wheel. No, it’s not Florida. This time it’s Pennsylvania, according to Times News. According to Governor Tom Corbett, this law was signed to help to stop distraction-related car accidents throughout the state. He adds that no text message is worth a human life. The new legislation comes with a campaign slogan — Drive Now & Text Later.
Still, distracted driving continues to be one of the top contributors to car accidents in Wilton Manors and elsewhere throughout the state of Florida. Yes, Florida is one of the only states left that has absolutely no restrictions on drivers and their use of cell phones and text messaging devices. According to Hands Free Info, the state’s Legislature has once again adjourned without passing a distracted driving law. Sen. Nancy Detert’s bill had the most traction with officials this year, but it still failed to make it through the Senate.
Our Wilton Manors car accident lawyers understand that Detert’s SB 416 was even drafted as a secondary enforcement to help make it more palatable for long-resistant lawmakers. This one was shot down in the Senate Transportation Committee. If it’s not obvious enough already, there are a lot of officials in the Sunshine State that are opposed to these kinds of laws. Take House Speaker Dean Cannon for example. He said that there are a number of distracted driving behaviors that are just as dangerous as texting and officials can’t run around tackling everyone for every distracting activity. He strongly opposes another “layer of prohibitive behavior.”
Florida’s 2012 cell phone and text messaging legislation:
-SB 416: Aimed to ban drivers in the state of Florida from text messaging behind the wheel. This law would have acted as a secondary offense. This legislation has already “died on calendar.”
-SB 122: Aimed to require that all students of driving courses complete a lesson covering the risks associated with distracted driving. This legislation died in Budget subcommittee on Transportation.
-SB 930: Aimed to ban drivers under the age of 19-years-old from using hand-held cell phones and other electronic devices. This legislation would have been a secondary offense. It has already died in Transportation.
-HB 299: Aimed to completely prohibit text messaging use for all drivers. This legislation was never considered.
-HB 187: Aimed to ban the use of hand-held cell phones and text messaging devices for drivers under the age of 19-years-old and school bus drivers. This legislation was never considered.
-HB 39: Aimed to instruct motorists who were cited for using a hand-held device to appear in front of a “designated official.” This legislation was never considered.
It’s sad that many of these bills were never even considered. Until Florida decides to fight back against these preventable accidents, travelers on our roadways will continue to be killed because of phone calls and text messages. It hardly seems worth it.
If you or someone in your family has been hurt in a distraction-related car accident in Wilton Manors, North Lauderdale, Miami or elsewhere in South Florida, the South Florida injury attorneys at Freeman & Mallard can help you understand your rights and are ready to fight for the compensation you deserve. Call 1-800-561-7777 to set up a free and confidential to review of your case.
More Blog Entries:
Drunk Driving Car Accidents in Hallandale More Likely through Spring Break, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney Blog, March 9, 2012
Distraction-Related Car Accidents in Lauderdale Lakes a Threat through Spring Break, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney Blog, March 5, 2012