Much like Washington, other states are toughening their distracted driving laws, hoping to make accidents less likely to occur.
In Ohio, new changes to the state’s distracted driving legislation just went into effect. And much like in Washington, officers have more reasons to pull a driver over for distraction.
Local troopers say that distractions continue to be a problem across the state. And that between 2016 and 2017, the number of fatal crashes tied to distracted driving doubled. With the new law, enforcement agencies will be able to crack down on careless drivers more effectively.
Now, anything from eating food or drinking, adjusting the radio, or putting on makeup may lead to extra fines.
Officials may pull drivers over and give them a minimum of a $100 fine for distractions, in addition to whatever the officer is writing the ticket for. For example, if an officer pulls over a driver for a lane violation but he or she was also using their phone’s GPS, the officer will give them two citations.
Law enforcement agents believe the new law will give drivers extra incentives to stay focused.
Local drivers are split about the rules now in effect, with some claiming that tougher distracted driving laws are not going to make roads safer. Others, however, believe they will see fewer distracted driving accidents thanks to the new law.
Despite their varied opinions, authorities believe that the law is important as an educational tool.
Being careless while behind the wheel is dangerous — and potentially deadly. Drivers who are worried about suffering due to the high costs associated with their citation fees should focus on the road and driving only. Distractions make drivers less likely to respond quickly to an emergency, making accidents more likely. Focus on the road will help to mitigate this problem.