According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), distracted driving is responsible for nearly 3,500 deaths across the country each year. Then there’s the 390,000 that are injured due to the likes of texting and driving, eating, drinking, or something similar annually.
Texting is certainly the distracted driving practice that’s been getting the most attention. Think of it this way: If you’re texting and driving a vehicle at 55 miles per hour, you’ve gone about the length of a football field in about five seconds. A lot can happen in a split second, let alone five seconds. You can learn about a lot of this in FL traffic school.
Bill HB 33
In an effort to drastically curb the number of distracted driving accidents in Florida, state lawmakers have introduced Bill HB 33, which, if signed into law, would make texting and driving a primary offense and come with much more serious penalties. According to Jackie Toledo, a state representative from Tampa that helped create the bill, more than 45,000 accidents in 2015 stemmed from distracted driving, resulting in about 200 deaths and almost 40,000 injuries.
So just what would this bill, if passed, entail when it comes to penalties for distracted driving? They’re quite steep:
• A first offense would result in a $30 fine, plus court costs. The grand total would likely result in a penalty of more than $100.
• A second-time offender within a five-year span would be charged with a moving violation. Three points would be added to their license and they’d likely pay a fine of somewhere north of $150.
• A distracted driving offender that causes an accident would be hit with six points on their driver’s license.
• Any distracted driving violations in a school zone would warrant an additional two points against a driver’s license in addition to other penalties.
The bill is a bold proposal from a state government really looking to crack down on distracted driving – and you can learn a lot more about the true danger of distracted driving at our Florida school, named the best traffic school online by various reputable sources. Our defensive driving school can serve as a great refresher for learning the rules of the road, for getting points removed from your license or for being proactive and showing your insurance company how serious you are about driver safety.