A bill to ban texting behind the wheel had support in the Senate and was endorsed 14-1 but a similar bill, House Bill 299 filed by Republican Ray Pilon of Sarasota failed in the House. The bill would have permitted police to write tickets for texting and driving to motorists who were pulled over for other driving offenses. Although the bill got to the floor in the Senate, three similar bills in the House got held up in the Transportation and Highway Safety subcommittee chaired by Republican Brad Drake.
How Did This Safety Subcommittee Get It So Wrong?
Although the goal of this subcommittee is to improve the safety of Florida roads and to reduce Florida car accidents, and the proposed legislation’s goal was intended to improve safety for Florida motorists to eliminate distractions behind the wheel, this subcommittee was responsible for this bill dying because it wasn’t put to a vote.
So, why did the subcommittee not bring this proposed legislation to a vote? Aren’t they responsible for highway safety? How could they send the wrong message to drivers about texting while driving in Florida?
The National Transportation Safety Board has recommended that all states ban drivers from using portable electronic devices. If the goal of this subcommittee is to help improve the safety of Florida roads and the safety of Florida motorists, then the subcommittee got this one wrong.
Florida’s ban on texting while driving law is not law, after all, which means that motorists can still send text messages behind the wheel, which has been a known cause of distracted driving and the reason many car accidents in Sarasota and throughout the state of Florida occur.
Although texting behind the wheel is not banned, if another driver causes an accident due to distracted driving, they can still be held accountable for your injuries. For help finding out your rights, call a skilled Sarasota accident attorney at the Mallard Law Firm for a free consultation at (888) 409-3805 today. You can also request a complimentary copy of our book, The Florida Accident Handbook: What You Need to Know After an Auto, Truck or Bicycle Accident.