[r54] Rep. Saunders supports "Texting and Driving Ban" (1/26/2011)

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Start Date: 1/26/2011 All Day
End Date: 1/26/2011
STATEHOUSE-State Rep. Tom Saunders (R-Lewisville) voted today to increase the safety of Hoosier motorists statewide as he helped pass legislation that would ban texting while driving.

House Bill 1129 would make sending or reading a text message or e-mail while driving a motor vehicle a Class C infraction.

"We can't legislate common sense, but unfortunately we are going to have to try. Too many accidents occur each year because of texting, requiring the need for Indiana law to catch up with technology.

"Car accidents happen too often and without warning, and to add texting into the mix, only increases the chance of an accident."

In 2009, the Indiana General Assembly passed legislation that would ban teen drivers under the age of 18 from texting or emailing while driving a motor vehicle. Since 2009, the legislature has received feedback from constituents urging the passage of legislation to include all Hoosier drivers.

Data from the National Safety Council shows that 1.4 million car accidents that occur annually are caused by drivers talking on the phone or texting-more than 200,000 alone are caused by texting.

Thirty other states already have similar laws in place, causing the amount of drivers seen texting behind the wheel to decrease.

House Bill 1129 passed the House with an 85-11 vote. It will now be heard in the Senate for further discussion. If passed into law, it will go into effect in July 2011.

To view up-to-date information regarding this legislation and others, visit www.in.gov/legislative