By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network
It is now against the law in Kentucky to text while driving. If you are caught texting while driving you will only get a warning. However, starting January 1, 2011, you will be fined; $25 for the fist offense and $50 for subsequent offenses. The new law prohibits drivers from sending or reading text messages, instant message and emails. The law also completely prohibits drivers under the age of 18-years-old from using cell phones. Kentucky is 1 of 10 states to ban sending text messages while driving. And roughly 30 states have bans completely prohibiting the use of cell phones for drivers under 18-years of age.
According to Gov. Steve Beshear, there were more than 57,000 automobile accidents on Kentucky roads, and more than 200 fatalities, that were attributed to driver inattention and distraction. Lt. David Jude, Kentucky State Police spokesman, said 45% of automobile accidents in Kentucky are a result of driver inattention and distraction, it is by far the number one cause of collisions in the state.
The problem police still face in enforcing the new law is determining whether the driving was sending or receiving a text message.
The law permits adult drivers over the age of 18 to read, select and enter a phone number and name into a cell phone for the purpose of making a phone call. The law also permits these drivers to use GPS devices on their cell phones (drivers under 18 can use their phone’s GPS device). The motorists can text while the vehicle is not in motion, for example, when the vehicle is stopped at a traffic signal. To read more details on the new law see Kentucky passes new law banning texting while driving.
The recklessness that results from texting while driving has been compared to the recklessness that occurs while driving under the influence of alcohol or other narcotics. This law is a step toward reducing the number of accidents on Kentucky roads as well as the number of injuries and fatalities resulting from driver distraction and inattention.