Sen. Nancy Detert, R-Venice, sponsor of SB 52, the Florida legislature’s latest attempt to ban sending and reading text messages while driving, decided to illustrate the dangers of texting while driving herself recently. She attempted to text while driving in the Capitol and struck two deer in the process. Working with the American Automotive Association, the Senator texted while she operated a driving simulator at the Capitol to show other lawmakers that it was time to take such legislation seriously.
"We have studies, we have lots of facts and figures, but any average person anecdotally knows how bad this is because they see it in their regular life every day," Detert said. "It’s just crazy."
SB 52 has one committee review left before it is sent to the state Senate for a vote. A similar bill currently in the House, HB 13, which is sponsored by Rep. Doug Holder, R-Venice, passed unanimously by the House Civil Justice subcommittee recently and has one committee left before proceeding to the House floor.
Matt and Stephanie Detert, Detert’s two 15-year-old grandchildren, also tried the simulator. One ran a stop sign while texting, and the other rear-ended another vehicle. Both 15-year-olds recently received their driving permits.
"It was hard to drive and look at the phone," Stephanie said. Matt also found it difficult to concentrate on driving while operating his phone.
"Don’t text and drive," he said when Detert asked him what he learned from the simulator. "A lot was going on, you can’t really do everything at one time."
Traffic safety experts have conducted numerous studies about the dangers of cell phone use while driving and the considerable risks of sending and receiving texts while driving. They have proven again and again that drivers definitely cannot do everything at one time and operate their vehicles in a safe and responsible manner. Orlando distracted driving accident lawyer James O. Cunningham also knows this well, as he has successfully represented countless clients who have been injured by distracted drivers. He and other Orlando personal injury lawyers would like to remind Floridians that no text message is more important than the safety of others is. If you receive a text message while driving and you must read it, wait for a safe opportunity to pull over to the side of the road. Better yet, turn off your cell phone each time you get behind the wheel, and check your messages once you arrive at your destination. If you or a family member has been injured due to a distracted driver and you want to learn more about your rights and legal options, call Orlando auto accident injury attorney James O. Cunningham today at 877-FL-INJURY (877-354-6587).
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.
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