In Alabama, you may soon have the right to hold a gun but not the right to hold a phone. That is the concern of some people to a proposed new distracted driving prevention bill before the legislature.
Here is the problem: the number of distracted driving accidents has skyrocketed in our state, and the primary cause is drivers on their phones. One solution is to make it illegal to hold a phone and drive.
Right now, it is legal to have a phone in your hand while you are driving. It is only illegal to text and drive. So in Alabama, you can look at directions or pick a song, both of which take your eyes off the road.
It might surprise you, but if you go to Georgia and try to drive while holding your phone, you are breaking the law. It has had a so-called Hands-Free Act since 2018.
If Alabama adopts the Georgia-type law, here are some other restrictions. It will be illegal to check your phone at a red light, and you can only use a music streaming service if you start it while parked. By the way, the Georgia law does allow you to grab your phone to report an accident.
In Alabama, penalties are still being worked out, but if found in violation, you are likely to get points added to your driving record and face increased fines.
Law enforcement officials say phone use and driving here on the Gulf Coast is so bad that they have found drivers watching TV shows and then Facebooking with their friends.
The legislature will seriously consider the bill starting in March.
If you are hurt in a traffic accident or suffer any other personal injury, you can talk to us at the Law Firm of Eiland and Ritchie (251) 666-1212 for free. We want to help you get back on your feet.
Also, join us for NBC 15 LawCall, our legal call-in TV show, here in Mobile every Sunday night at 10:30, right after the news. We will take your calls live.
Alabama personal injury lawyer