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Facts on Columbia's Potential Texting while Driving Ban

| Mar 3, 2011

The Columbia City Council is debating to ban texting while driving, a common distraction that can cause car accidents. But what would the law require of drivers, and what could warrant you a ticket?

As a Columbia car accident attorney , I've looked into this proposed bill. Here is a list of what you can't and can do under the bill, if it passes, according to news reports:

Can't Do:

1. Send, read or compose a text message, email or instant message while driving a moving vehicle

Can Do:

  1. Talk on the phone while driving.
  2. Text to summon "medical or other emergency assistance."
  3. Text while "lawfully parked or stopped." This includes stop signs, red lights, railroad crossings, etc.
  4. Text while using a cell phone's hands free, voice activated feature.
  5. Turn your phone on or off while driving, or "activate an internal feature or function of the device."
  6. Use a CB radio.
Police officers will also have to follow certain guidelines to know when to issue citations under the potential law. What cops CAN do:
  1. Pull you over if they have an unobstructed view of you using your phone to send, receive or read a text while driving.
What cops CAN'T do:
  1. Arrest you
  2. Take your cell phone
  3. Search, or request to search, you, your car or any of your passengers

As a Columbia personal injury attorney , I'm glad to see some attention being paid to the dangers of texting while driving. I look forward to learning about what happens with this bill.

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