Representative Regina Huff of Williamsburg has pre-filed BR 212, which bans drivers from using a personal communication device or stand-alone electronic device while operating a vehicle on public highways, unless there is an emergency.
“No life should be lost, or accident caused, because someone is busy on their phone instead of focusing on the road,” Huff said. “My bill strengthens our existing ban on texting and driving by prohibiting all phones and other electronic devices from being used when operating a vehicle. My hope is that this measure will save countless lives.”
BR 212 would prohibit the use of cell phones, tablets, laptop computers, and other electronic devices from being used while driving. Kentucky outlawed texting while driving in 2010, but the prohibition is difficult to enforce and does not extend to the many social media and communications options available today. Tennessee recently passed a similar measure, so that if BR 212 were to pass, the law would be consistent for drivers traveling across the state line.
Under the provisions of BR 212, a violation will result in a fine of $50 for the first or second offense, and $100 for each subsequent offense or an offense which results in an accident. For the first offense, a person may choose to attend a state traffic school instead of paying the fine. However, the fine is $200 if the violation occurs in a work zone when there are construction workers present, or a school zone when there are warning lights.
“This is an idea that many of my constituents took an interest in and asked me to put forward, especially after Tennessee took action to ban distracted driving,” Huff added. “A tragedy can happen in the blink of an eye, and I really believe this bill can be effective in ensuring the safety of our citizens on the road.”
The legislation, BR 212, will be considered in the 2020 session and can be found here.