Articles Posted in Driving While Texting

Florida_texting_drivers.jpgOur South Florida traffic attorneys have learned that Parkland Commissioner Jared Moskowitz plans to ask the City Commission to pass a ban on texting while driving within Parkland’s city limits. They would become the first city in Broward County to pass such a ban.

The main argument in favor of the ban is that text messaging behind the wheel creates a dangerous and unnecessary distraction. In fact, a recent study by a vehicle safety research organization found that drivers who text while behind the wheel of a car or other motor vehicle are 23 times more likely to crash than other drivers. Another study out of Virginia Tech’s Transportation Institute found that the average text message takes the driver’s eyes away from the road for 4.6 out of every six seconds.

However, critics worry that it could be difficult to enforce the ban, because some drivers don’t know when they enter city limits and it could be hard for law enforcement officials to see if someone is texting while they’re driving upwards of 30 mph.

The fines for texting behind the wheel have yet to be determined, but they could mirror similar laws in other states. For instance, California fines drivers $20 for their first offense. Lawmakers say they are still pushing for a statewide ban on texting while driving.

Parkland could become first Broward city to crack down on texting while driving, South Florida Sun Sentinel, August 17, 2009 Continue reading

Although text messaging while driving is already banned in 10 states, lawmakers in Florida say it’s unlikely that a proposed cell phone law will pass. The bill would prevent Florida drivers from texting and would require drivers in Florida to use a hands-free device to talk.

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, five states have already banned drivers from using hand-held cell phones. A spokesman for the institute said that lawmakers in over 40 states are considering legislation dealing with the use of cell phones on the road. Some of them are also considering changes to the current laws which would make the laws easier to enforce.

 

 

Miami Senator Frederica Wilson, who is co-sponsoring the text messaging ban, says, “I really don’t think (drivers) understand the risk … they’re taking when they pick that phone up and begin to dial and text message.”

However, she also says that other lawmakers are focused on budget issues rather than cracking down on reckless driving. “They have a little term, ‘We can’t legislate everything,'” she adds.

Texting while driving likely to stay legal in Florida, South Florida Sun Sentinel, April 28, 2009
New statewide campaign targets drivers who talk on cell phone, text, South Florida Sun-Sentinel, July 22, 2009 Continue reading

Florida may soon become the eighth State to ban texting while driving. We all know the dangers of driving under the influence. As a Broward County DUI defense lawyer, I have seen DUI laws in Florida become tougher and tougher with each Legislative session.

Next month, Florida’s Legislature will take up a bill proposed by Representative Doug Holder from Sarasota. His proposed bill seeks to prohibit the operation of a moving vehicle while reading, manually writing or typing, or sending messages on electronic wireless communication devices.

texting.jpgThe National Safety Council, (citing a Harvard study), notes that cell phone usage in general contributes to an estimated 6 percent of all automobile accidents, which amounts to 636,000 crashes, 330,000 injuries and 2,600 deaths each year.

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