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Proposal looking to make texting while driving primary offense

Texting while driving would go from a secondary to a primary offense
Posted at 5:50 PM, Apr 04, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-04 17:50:41-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — A proposal that would make it easier for police to cite motorists they see texting while driving is ready to be heard by the full House.

The State Affairs Committee unanimously backed a measure that would shift texting while driving from a secondary offense to a primary offense.

Currently, police can only cite drivers for texting behind the wheel if they are pulled over for other reasons. By making it a primary offense, police could pull over motorists solely for texting while driving.

Representative Jackie Toledo is the bill sponsor.

"We have all seen it. We have all done it. Texting and driving has become an epidemic. People are not paying attention," said Toledo. "They are driving too slow or too fast, and they are crashing into one another."

The House proposal this year would require law enforcement officers to record the race and ethnicity of people who get citations for texting while driving, a requirement that is not in the Senate version.