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New Florida Law Makes It Illegal to Text While Driving

If you have been paying attention to the news lately, you have undoubtedly seen the increase in accidents that have been caused by distracted driving. While the term “distracted driving” has become a recent buzzword, the concept has been around for as long as automobiles themselves.

Distracted driving refers to driving while engaging in any number of activities that take the driver’s attention off the road. For example, the following are all common examples of distracted driving:

  • Texting while driving;
  • Talking on the phone while driving;
  • Changing the music;
  • Fiddling with the GPS;
  • Daydreaming;
  • Reading;
  • Grooming (applying make-up, shaving, trimming nails, etc.)

Of all of those activities, however, it is texting while driving that recently caught the attention of the Florida Legislature.

Texting Ban Across Florida

As of last year, it officially became against the law to text and drive. However, the law only makes texting while driving a secondary offense. This means that an officer would need to witness a driver break some other traffic law before he could pull that driver over and cite them for texting while driving.

Still, the law does quite a bit to keep drivers from texting. For example, if a driver is texting while he or she gets into an accident, that driver will have six points added to their license. In the event that a driver is caught breaking some other traffic law, but does not get into an accident, the new law will put an additional two points on that driver’s record. If a driver accumulates 12 points, his or her license will be suspended for a period of up to one year.

Some Are Calling for Stricter Laws and More Enforcement

Despite the fact that this law is definitely a step in the right direction, some are calling out to the legislature to make the law cover all cell-phone use while driving. Many states across the country have enacted total bans on all cell-phone use, such as Maryland and New Jersey. Those who say the law doesn’t go far enough also point to the fact that it is only a secondary offense, and will therefore contribute little to any actual decrease in the incidents of texting while driving.

Have You Been Injured by a Distracted Driver?

If you have been injured by a distracted driver, you may be entitled to a monetary award to compensate you for your past medical bills, future medical expenses, as well as the pain and suffering caused by the accident. To find out more about what you may be entitled to, you should speak to an experienced Broward County personal injury lawyer today. With a lawyer’s assistance you will be able to better understand all the options that are available to you and will then be able to make the decision that is best for you and your family.

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Understand your legal rights when you are involved in a car accident. Schedule an appointment or contact us at 954-961-5100 for more information or to discuss your free consultation. We speak English and Spanish.

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