More than a decade after Florida lawmakers first proposed restricting cell phone use behind the wheel, the Legislature is poised to ban motorists from texting while driving.
But some analysts say the prohibition is likely to do little to change a culture where few people — including lawmakers — appear ready to let go of their smartphones, even while careering down Florida highways.
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What Florida’s text ban would do
Beginning, Oct. 1, motorists could be ticketed if they were texting while driving.
Law enforcement would have to stop a driver for another offense — like careless driving, if a vehicle was swerving or going too slow while the driver texted.
Just having a smartphone or tablet on the passenger’s seat won’t be considered wrongdoing, lawmakers said. But if an officer sees the driver texting, a $30 ticket could be handed out.
A second violation committed within five years would be a moving violation and three points could be added to the driver’s driver license. The driver also would face a $60 fine.