Florida House Put Brakes On Texting While Driving Ban

TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/NSF) – A controversial bill which would have banned texting while behind the wheel went nowhere fast during the last legislative session which ended on Friday.

While the measure gained some traction in the Senate it failed to go anywhere in the House.

The proposal (SB 416) would have allowed law enforcement officers to tack on a ticket for texting to motorists pulled over for other driving offenses.

While the Senate plan got to the floor, three bills in the House never got out of park after being bottled up in a key House subcommittee chaired by Eucheeanna Republican Brad Drake. House leaders likened the bill to needless government intrusion into people’s lives.

Thirty-five states and the District of Columbia already have texting while driving bans.

The News Service of Florida contributed to this report.

  • Jordan Watson

    This should have been a no brainer! Everyday I noticed an idiot texting while holding up traffic or drifting in another lane. Please ask the victims of these idiots how they feel about this all important bill losing traction. And lets do more than just ticket these idiots, take the right to drive away from them. The next time it could be you or a loved one.

  • Jordan Watson

    Sorry! I meant notice.

  • bobbyb

    Unbelievable! Government intrusion – how about an out of control driver intruding into someones car. Why don’t the just install PCs into cars – that won’t be a distraction ! I would like to know who voted against it and their party affiliations.

  • Erik Wood

    I read that 94% of drivers think Text and Drive is lethal but over one third still do it. What to do? I think legislation has value in raising public awareness in forums like this one but it will be difficult to solely legislate our way out of this issue. I just read that over 3/4 of teens text daily – many text more than 4000 times a month. New college students no longer have email addresses! They use texting and Facebook – even with their professors. Tweens (ages 9 -12) send texts to each other from their bikes. This text and drive issue is in its infancy and its not going away.

    I decided to do something about distracted driving after my three year old daughter was nearly run down right in front of me by a texting driver. Instead of a shackle that locks down phones and alienates the user (especially teens) I built a tool called OTTER that is a simple GPS based, texting auto reply app for smartphones. It also silences those irresistible call ringtones while driving unless you have a bluetooth enabled. I think if we can empower the individual then change will come to our highways now and not just our laws.

    Erik Wood, owner
    OTTER app

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