Describing Florida Texting and Driving Laws
On Behalf of Rosenthal, Levy, Simon & Sosa | April 26, 2022 | Car Accidents
Electronic devices, mainly cell phones, are the leading cause of distractions for motorists. In Florida alone, 56,425 distracted driving crashes occurred in 2021, resulting in 2,723 injuries and 333 deaths. Distracted driving crashes have exponentially increased in recent years as the use of wireless communication devices continues to advance. This is why the Florida Ban on Texting While Driving bill was signed into law in 2019.
Generally speaking, this law allows law enforcement officers to pull over motorists who are texting or using their cell phones without other reasons for pulling them over. This means that police officers are not required to catch you while committing another traffic offense, such as running a stop sign or speeding, to pull you over and give you a ticket when you are caught texting and driving.
What is the Florida Ban on Texting While Driving Law?
Answering and Making Phone Calls
While drivers can hold their phones to make and answer calls while driving, it is highly discouraged. Likewise, it’s unlawful for drivers to hold a wireless device if they are driving in an active construction zone or a school zone. They can, however, use a hands-free system for making or answering phone calls.
Texting while driving is illegal anywhere in Florida. This includes the manual typing of multiple numbers, letters, characters, or symbols into a virtual keyboard, reading anything off a device when the car is in motion, or hitting a button to send messages.
Extra Rules for Bus Drivers and Truckers
Bus and truck drivers are held to a higher standard than other motorists because of the nature of the jobs. This is why they are only permitted to use hands-free wireless communication devices when driving and can be pulled over by law enforcement officers if they violate this rule.
But while these distracted driving rules seek to impose harsher penalties on motorists who utilize their cell phones while driving, there are certain exceptions. Drivers can use their cell phones for texting when they’re at a stoplight or when their car is not moving. Likewise, using hands-free electronic wireless devices for navigation or keeping up with traffic and weather alerts is legal.
In addition, emergency workers, law enforcement officers, fire service professionals, and people using their phones to report a criminal or emergency activity are exempted.
Seek Legal Guidance From an Experienced West Palm Beach Car Accident Lawyer Now
If you or a loved one has been hurt in a distracted driving crash in Florida, reach out to our West Palm Beach car accident lawyers right away. We will begin investigating the circumstances of the crash as soon as possible to establish whether the other driver violated a distracted driving law when you got injured. This can significantly impact the amount of compensation you can receive.
The West Palm Beach car accident lawyers of Rosenthal, Levy, Simon & Sosa will build a solid claim for your losses and advise you of the best legal options specific to your case. You can fill out our online contact form to schedule your free case consultation or call our office at 561-478-2500.