Distracted Driving Q & A’s

Can I be pulled over for using my cell phone while driving in Florida?

Technically, no.  Florida is only one of five states in the nation that does not allow law enforcement to pull over a driver for only texting and driving. Texting while driving is considered a secondary offense, meaning Florida law enforcement first must stop a driver for another offense – such as careless driving, if a vehicle was swerving or going too slow while the driver was texting. Florida lawmakers have made several attempts over the years to enact laws that would make the offense a primary one with no success.

What is the most dangerous county in the State of Florida for distracted driving?

Throughout the State of Florida, distracted driving remains a problem- but one county stands out amongst the rest: Orange County. In 2017 alone, 6,972 distracted driving accidents were reported in Orange County, according to reports from the Florida Department of Safety and Motor Vehicles.

What are latest proposed changes to the legislation when it comes to distracted driving in Florida?

The Florida Senate has recently introduced legislation that would make distracted driving a primary offense. This new law would prohibit “reading, writing, performing personal grooming, applying a beauty aid or similar products, interacting with pets or unsecured cargo, using a personal wireless communications device, or engaging in any other activity, conduct, task or action that causes distraction.”

If passed, the law would go into effect in Fall 2019. The legislation gives drivers a three-month grace period where law enforcement would only issue warnings for offenses from October through December. After that time, citations will be issued for any offenders. The legislation does allow for use of a hands-free device. Drivers would also be allowed to check their cell phones so long as the car is not in motion, including being stopped at a stop light or being parked in a parking lot.

What can I do to help eliminate distractions behind the wheel?

One of the best recommendations we have for drivers to avoid any possible distractions is to put away your devices. Many cell phones come with functions where the phone can send an automatic text message in reply to any messages received, informing the other person that they are driving. Also, put the phone out of sight so that it is not a temptation.  If you need GPS for your trip, synch your phone to your vehicle and plug in your coordinates before heading out. Avoid eating and driving. When in doubt, ask yourself: “will this activity take my attention off of the road?” If the answer is yes, do not do that activity until you are at a complete stop. Make sure other passengers in your car are aware of this fact, as well. If you have young children who need your attention, make sure you pull over to the side of the road where you are out of traffic and can tend to them safely.

Get the Help You Need After an Orlando Auto Accident with a Distracted Driver.

As a car accident attorney who handles these type cases every day, I advise that you put your cell phone away while driving, as it cuts down your ability to react quickly and appropriately to hazards around you. The consequences can be deadly, distracted driving is 100% preventable.

If you or a loved one has experienced an injury or fatality as the result of an automobile accident with a distracted driver, you need to contact an experienced Orlando Auto Accident Attorney immediately. Distracted driving can be difficult to prove in court. Our Orlando Car Accident Team is well equipped and armed with years of legal experience helping people file auto insurance claims. We can help you obtain maximum compensation for medical bills, future medical treatment, loss of wages, pain and suffering, etc. We also offer our clients The More for You Guarantee.  Feel free to fill out our quick contact form on this page or call us right now at 407-490-1271 for your free consultation. Feel free to fill out our quick contact form on our website to discuss your legal options in greater detail.

Related Resources:

https://www.flhsmv.gov/safety-center/driving-safety/distracted-driving/

https://www.wjhg.com/content/news/Optimism-high-for-tougher-distracted-driving-laws-to-pass-this-year-506801591.html

https://www.fdot.gov/safety/2a-programs/distracted-driving.shtm

https://www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/distracted-driving

https://exchange.aaa.com/safety/distracted-driving/tips-for-preventing-distracted-driving/#.XIg0nndFzIU

https://www.enddd.org/the-facts-about-distracted-driving/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI-ZG9suP94AIVBTJpCh0G6wchEAAYASAAEgLLffD_BwE

 

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