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Florida texting and driving bill passes House and Senate, heading to governor's desk

Posted at 6:07 PM, Apr 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-30 20:07:00-04

A bill that would make texting and driving a primary offense in Florida has passed both the House and the Senate, and now heads to the governor's desk.

The bill also makes school zones and active work zones hands-free areas.

It passed the Florida House by a vote of 108-7.


“Today, Florida took a giant step forward towards saving lives and making our roads safer,” Rep. Jackie Toledo (R-Tampa) said. “Distracted driving has become an epidemic and I thank my colleagues in both the Senate and House for passing this much needed common-sense legislation.”

As a primary offense, law enforcement will be able to pull over motorists for texting and driving in the state of Florida. Under current law, drivers can only be cited for texting if they are pulled over for another offense.

Texting while driving is already a primary offense in at least 43 other states.

The new law would take effect July 1. However, the hands free part would not carry fines until Jan. 1 of 2020.