Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Steele working to reduce distracted driving

Steele working to reduce distracted driving
HB 2376 would ban texting while driving

STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – Rep. Victoria Steele, D-Tucson (District 9), introduced a bill intended to cut down on distracted driving by banning the use of handheld mobile devices to send, write or read text messages while driving.

HB 2376 would make using handheld mobile devices to text a civil traffic violation and subject to a $200 fine.

“It’s my hope that this legislation will make our roadways safer by reducing the number of distractions drivers face,” said Steele. “There are so many accidents and fatalities that could have been prevented if people were not using their mobile devices.”

Steele said she was compelled to introduce this legislation after Arizona Department of Public Safety Officer Tim Huffman was killed in May 2013. The driver of a semi-truck allegedly was looking at photos on his cellphone when he hit the officer’s patrol car on Interstate 8. The officer died at the scene.

“I believe this horrible tragedy could have been avoided,” Steele said.

She added that this ban will not affect the use of hands-free devices while driving.

“I just want to help drivers keep their hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road,” Steele said.


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