FDOT, AT&T, and AAA are partnering to reduce distracted driving on Florida’s roadways by educating the public about the new Florida law banning texting while driving.
On October 1, 2013, the “Florida ban on Texting While Driving Law” took effect. The provisions of the law state that a person may not operate a motor vehicle in motion while manually typing into a wireless communications device known as texting, emailing, and instant messaging (non-voice).
To help educate motorists, events and information were shared across the state during the month of October. This included participation at high school assemblies, radio public service announcements, collaboration with local law enforcement agencies, and a variety of print messaging and electronic notices along Florida highways and turnpikes. Safety materials and tip cards were distributed at AAA and AT&T stores.
Sending or receiving a text takes a driver’s eyes from the road for an average of 4.6 seconds, the equivalent of driving, at 55 mph, the length of an entire football field, blind. With more than 6 billion text messages sent each day in the United States, it is important to remind drivers to “Put It Down.”
- Put your cell phone away or silence it while driving so you are not tempted to respond while in motion.
- Download an app that disables the device while in motion.
- Designate a non-driving texter to respond for you.
- Set up a special message to tell callers you will respond when it is safe to do so.