Get ready Pennsylvania, no more texting while driving. The state Senate has sent an amended bill to the desk of Governor Tom Corbett, making it a primary offense and grounds for police to pull your vehicle over and write you a violation. The violation does carry a fine. The Governor is expected to sign the bill and it will go into effect 120 days after signature. Currently, there are 30 other states that have the same ban.
Pennsylvania does not ban talking on cell phones while driving without a hands-free device. Law makers are considering banning cell phone use while driving without a hands-free device. Nine other states have bans on using your cell phone while driving without a hands-free device, such as a Blue Tooth.
In an age where you do mostly everything from your phone from paying bills to looking up directions, one has to ask themselves "what did we do before this technology?" Have we become so reliant on taking care of everything with electronics that we forget about our safety and most importantly the law. State Senator John Wozniak (D) of Cambria County, PA gave a floor speech on Tuesday, November 1, 2011 in Harrisburg before voting took place. In his speech he posed this thought "All the rest of your life for the simple thing of texting a friend you have to live with the fact that you did not have control of your vehicle and you killed somebody".
Can everyone remember when you turned 16 or 17, waiting for your chance to pass the test and get your license? For those of us who did get their license long before the age of cell phones, the only distraction was the radio or all your friends piled up inside. Things are much different today, but one fact remains the same - driving is a privilege. We often take this for granted while we are rushing here and there, but one has to remember the responsibility and the safety of yourself and others on the road. Try to think back to those days you had to wait for the test result and how much you wanted that little plastic card with your picture. I think before we all start our cars, that memory should come rushing back.
Governor Corbett also signed a law during the week of October 25th requiring new regulations for teen drivers. Some of the new regulations include more stringent training requirements before you can test for your license and a limit as to the amount of passengers allowed in the car.
If you or someone you know is in legal trouble in Pennsylvania, please contact Jason R. Antoine, Pennsylvania Criminal Attorney.