An Overview Of Texting While Driving Laws In Florida

Apr 4, 2019

Welcome to Baytowne Reporting, your trusted source for legal information. In this article, we will provide you with a comprehensive overview of the texting while driving laws in Florida. As an esteemed court reporting company, we understand the importance of staying informed about the laws that govern our roads and highways.

The Importance of Texting While Driving Laws

Texting while driving is a dangerous practice that puts both the driver and others on the road at risk. To combat this issue, Florida has implemented strict laws to address distracted driving. These laws aim to reduce accidents, injuries, and fatalities caused by texting while driving.

Understanding Florida's Texting While Driving Laws

Florida's texting while driving laws prohibit the use of wireless communication devices for texting while operating a motor vehicle. The law applies to all drivers, regardless of age or the type of vehicle they are operating.

Under Florida law, a "wireless communication device" includes smartphones, tablets, laptops, and any other handheld communication devices with text messaging capabilities. It specifically targets activities such as reading, writing, or sending electronic messages, emails, or internet data.

Penalties for Texting While Driving

Breaking Florida's texting while driving laws can result in severe penalties. The first offense is considered a non-moving violation, punishable by a fine of $30. However, if caught again within five years of the first offense, it is upgraded to a moving violation with a fine of $60. Additionally, a second offense within five years may also result in points being added to your driving record.

In some cases, texting while driving can lead to serious accidents or even fatalities. If texting while driving results in a crash, drivers can face even harsher penalties. These penalties may include fines, points on your driving record, suspension of your driver's license, and even potential jail time.

Exceptions and Guidelines

While the law forbids texting while driving, there are a few exceptions and guidelines to consider. These mainly apply to cases where using a wireless communication device is deemed necessary for safety purposes.

Some exceptions to the law include:

  • Law enforcement officers performing their duties
  • Drivers reporting an emergency situation, criminal activity, or reckless driving
  • Drivers using their devices for navigation purposes, as long as it does not require manual input

Safe Alternatives to Texting While Driving

To ensure road safety and avoid any legal trouble, it is best to adopt safe alternatives to texting while driving. Here are a few recommended measures:

  1. Utilize hands-free voice commands or Bluetooth technology for calls and messages
  2. Plan your route and use navigation apps before starting your journey
  3. If necessary, safely pull over to a designated area before using your device

Stay Informed and Promote Safe Driving

At Baytowne Reporting, we firmly believe in promoting safe driving practices. It's crucial to stay up-to-date with Florida's texting while driving laws and abide by them to protect yourself and others on the road.

Remember, avoiding distractions while driving not only keeps you safe but also helps maintain the well-being of our communities. Stay informed and together, let's build a safer driving environment.