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Florida Distracted Driving Laws – What You Should Know

Distracted driving is a major concern all over the country.

We hear from clients all the time about concerns regarding distracted drivers on roadways. It’s disturbing to look around in traffic and see a driver looking down while operating his or her vehicle.

Here are some of the rules of the road in Florida that our car accident attorneys suggest you keep in mind. We often  see cases for accident injury victims caused by distracted driving.

Distracted Driving: What’s Legal?

While many Florida residents  prefer stricter policies, it is legal to talk on a cell phone while driving in Florida.

In some states, there are laws against this behavior, but in Florida, officials take the view of avoiding banning cell phone use altogether. Although regular cell phone use that doesn’t involve texting or typing is less distracting than other more egregious forms of cell phone use, it still comes with risks and dangers. It’s always important for every driver to be alert and concentrating on the road anytime they’re behind the wheel.

Florida Car Accident Law: What’s Illegal?

Florida does have specific motor vehicle codes that prohibit texting or typing while driving. Florida Statute, Title XXIII chapter 316, wireless communication devices prohibition states that:

“A person may not operate a motor vehicle while manually typing or entering multiple letters, numbers, symbols, or other characters into a wireless communications device or while sending or reading data on such a device for the purpose of non-voice interpersonal communication, including, but not limited to, communication methods known as texting, e-mailing, and instant messaging. As used in this section, the term “wireless communications device” means any handheld device used or capable of being used in a handheld manner, that is designed or intended to receive or transmit text or character-based messages, access or store data, or connect to the Internet or any communications service …. and that allows text communications.”

This law is in place due to the increase in tragic fatality rates related to instances where drivers are texting or looking down at a cell phone while operating a vehicle. These types of accidents should never happen, and when they do, they often end in heartache and severe consequences.

Teen Drivers and Florida GDL

Like other states, Florida does have graduated driver’s license laws or GDLs to help keep the roads safer.

Since teen drivers represent some of the biggest dangers on the road, it makes sense to have specific state programs that introduce new drivers to the responsibility of getting behind the wheel. These programs focus on distracted driving training and helping new drivers understand how to avoid these liabilities.

If you have any questions about Florida car accident law or negligence, or an injury that you sustained on the road, call the law offices of Steve Watrel, P.A. to hear from an experienced auto accident lawyer in Jacksonville, Florida. We’re ready to help you through every step of a car accident injury case. Let us help you get your voice heard in Florida courts.