During the holidays, residents in Florida likely hear a lot of reports about checkpoints being set up to watch for or nab drunk drivers. This makes a lot of sense with so many parties and other celebrations going on at which people generally consume alcoholic beverages and then drive home. Underlying these reports is the known facts that drinking and driving is not only dangerous but deadly.
Another risk to innocent people has grown in the last several years and that comes in the form of distracted driving. Currently the vast majority of states – more than 40 in all – have some form of ban on texting while driving. Florida does not. That, however, may change if a new bill making its way through the state legislature passes. If approved, the measure would make texting and driving illegal.
Today such activity is a secondary offense in Florida. The new law would make it a primary offense so officers could pull people over for this behavior alone. The first violation would be considered non-moving but a second or subsequent violation would be a moving violation on a driver’s record. Fines would also be increased. It is unknown if any points would be added to a driver’s record or, if so, how many.
Floridians who have struggled with the loss of a loved one due to a distracted driver may find talking with an attorney a useful way of learning their compensation options.
Source: WTSB, “Florida may finally get real texting and driving laws,” Noah Pransky, December 7, 2017