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Texting or cellphone talking drivers facing tougher penalties (California raising fines)
The Daily Journal ^ | 08/15/2011 | Bill Silverfarb

Posted on 08/16/2011 7:08:28 PM PDT by SeekAndFind

Driving while talking on a cellphone or texting may get costlier if Gov. Jerry Brown signs a bill that passed out of the Legislature yesterday to increase the fines for the offenses.

Senate Bill 28, authored by state Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, will also add a “point” on driving records for second offenses, leading to higher insurance rates for those who do not comply with the state’s hands-free law, which went into effect in July 2008.

The bill also will now apply to bicyclists, who were unintentionally omitted from Simitian’s original hands-free law.

“Bicyclists also have to abide by the rules of the road,” Simitian said.

Currently, the fine for a first offense for violating the hands-free law is $20 and $50 for the second offense. The new fines will be $50 for the first offense and $100 for the second.

“The fine is relatively modest compared to other traffic fines,” Simitian said yesterday.

With penalties and fees, the total cost for a first offense would go up from about $189 to $309, depending on the county.

Part of the fee increase will go toward a fund for distracted-driver education through the state Office of Traffic Safety. SB 28 also makes it a primary offense for teen drivers who violate the law. Drivers under 18 are prevented from using any devices, hands-free or not, under Senate Bill 33, which Simitian also authored. SB 28 will allow the state to now qualify for federal funding on distracted driving.

Since the hands-free law went into effect three years ago, fatal traffic accidents and collisions have dropped significantly in the state, Simitian said.

“We’ve seen good results but we need more compliance,” Simitian said.

Driver distractions are the leading cause of most vehicle crashes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

(Excerpt) Read more at smdailyjournal.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Government; News/Current Events; US: California
KEYWORDS: california; cellphone; driving; texting

1 posted on 08/16/2011 7:08:33 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

Texting while driving should be automatic jail time.

I reserve my comments about cell phone talking while driving for people who understand science and don’t think they are immune.


2 posted on 08/16/2011 7:14:33 PM PDT by freedumb2003 (Herman Cain 2012)
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To: SeekAndFind

I texting but not the talking.


3 posted on 08/16/2011 7:16:00 PM PDT by svcw
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To: svcw

I GET texting but not talking. (that’s what I get for texting while watching TV)


4 posted on 08/16/2011 7:16:57 PM PDT by svcw
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To: SeekAndFind
If anybody believes this is about safety they need to have their head examined.

It's ALL about revenue. They have to find more ways to keep feeding their insatiable appetite for more programs, more freebies, and their ILLEGAL aliens.

5 posted on 08/16/2011 7:20:06 PM PDT by unixfox (Abolish Slavery, Repeal The 16th Amendment!)
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To: unixfox

“If anybody believes this is about safety they need to have their head examined. “

If they mase it legal to shoot anyone talking or testing on a cell phone I would kill 100+ a day!!!!

They are nothing but hazards to navigation and should be killed!


6 posted on 08/16/2011 7:38:37 PM PDT by dalereed (uity wise!)
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To: dalereed

What about a person talking to a passenger? Or say a mom dealing with a screaming baby trapped in their car seat? Or a person eating a sandwich, drinking a coffee? What is it about cell phones that you don’t like?


7 posted on 08/16/2011 7:46:59 PM PDT by svcw
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To: svcw

There are a lot of ninnys out there who think that unless they can see the driver’s hands at 2 and 10 (or 9 and 3, depending on when they learned to drive) that driver is automatically “unsafe”.

Best solution is when distracted driving is a secondary offense. Those who have proved their multitasking incompetence through another violation are the only ones who need to worry.


8 posted on 08/16/2011 7:55:59 PM PDT by lightman (Adjutorium nostrum (+) in nomine Domini)
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To: SeekAndFind

This is fine with me.


9 posted on 08/16/2011 8:00:31 PM PDT by Huck (Read Antifederalist Brutus!)
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To: lightman

How strange. 2/3 and 9/10, my hands are not on the wheel quite frequently as I drive a manual, five speed.
I think you are correct.


10 posted on 08/16/2011 8:03:12 PM PDT by svcw
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To: svcw

Mine either—in my part of PA with steep hills and narrow valleys I run my automatic like it was a stick...a lot of downshifting to save the brakes.


11 posted on 08/16/2011 8:21:31 PM PDT by lightman (Adjutorium nostrum (+) in nomine Domini)
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To: SeekAndFind

Sad they have to make laws, but folks don’t use common sense. I know the corrupt government is looking for more $$ but on the other hand, cell phones have caused countless deaths and injuries. I see people tailgating traveling at 65+mph while talking on and playing with their phones. Moving time bombs.


12 posted on 08/16/2011 8:34:36 PM PDT by dragnet2 (Diversion and evasion are tools of deceit)
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To: SeekAndFind

We already have reckless driving laws.
Rick Perry struck down this texting nonsense.
Just ticket them for reckless driving.


13 posted on 08/16/2011 8:35:14 PM PDT by mylife (OPINIONS ~ $ 1.00 HALFBAKED ~ 50c)
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To: SeekAndFind

on US interstates, 75% of vehicles ahead of me driving oddly I am able to see a phone on the ear or in a hand. I cannot even imagine how texting fits into this. I was hit by a guy last month who almost HAD to be texting to not have seen me well ahead of time (don’t think he ever braked).

That said, I also don’t see how it gets enforced.

My personal view is that interstates should have jammers (I know they are currently illegal in the US). This would be inconvenient to passengers, and I don’t care.

My general suspicion is that most of the posters who compare texting or cellyakking to talking to a passenger in your car are people who do one or both regularly and don’t appreciate the criticism.


14 posted on 08/16/2011 8:41:59 PM PDT by WoofDog123
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To: mylife

Ya sure ya want that?

In CA, reckless driving violations are nearly as severe and DUI.

Cell phones use and reckless driving are really two different things entirely.


15 posted on 08/16/2011 8:44:47 PM PDT by dragnet2 (Diversion and evasion are tools of deceit)
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To: WoofDog123
My personal view is that interstates should have jammers

Won't work. People wouldn't be able to call for help, or report crimes or accidents.

16 posted on 08/16/2011 8:46:41 PM PDT by dragnet2 (Diversion and evasion are tools of deceit)
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To: dragnet2

true. jammers in urban areas, with phone boxes every 1/2 mile or so?


17 posted on 08/16/2011 8:48:28 PM PDT by WoofDog123
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To: dragnet2

Cell phone use is not a problem unless it cause reckless driving.
And it is not the same as DUI.
If it is in Ca, then Ca is nuts.


18 posted on 08/16/2011 8:48:57 PM PDT by mylife (OPINIONS ~ $ 1.00 HALFBAKED ~ 50c)
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To: svcw

Yeah, people smoking, holding a dog, talking on a phone, yelling at kids, adjusting radio/air conditioning. etc. etc.


19 posted on 08/16/2011 8:50:22 PM PDT by pnz1
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To: SeekAndFind
Bravo!

It's bad enough to deal with unlicensed drivers, but when they are also texting, there is no escape.

It should also apply to pedestrians, specially in parking lots. There are stupid people all over the place.

20 posted on 08/16/2011 8:52:02 PM PDT by Publius6961 (My world was lovely, until it was taken over by parasites.)
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To: svcw
What about a person talking to a passenger? Or say a mom dealing with a screaming baby trapped in their car seat? Or a person eating a sandwich, drinking a coffee? What is it about cell phones that you don’t like?

People who are delusional, and can barely deal with driving.
Taking their eyes off the road just makes it a matter of time.

Most people can carry on a conversation with a passenger without taking their eyes off the road.

21 posted on 08/16/2011 8:54:53 PM PDT by Publius6961 (My world was lovely, until it was taken over by parasites.)
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To: Publius6961

You cant outlaw stupid.

Were would we lock them all up? LoL


22 posted on 08/16/2011 8:57:16 PM PDT by mylife (OPINIONS ~ $ 1.00 HALFBAKED ~ 50c)
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To: mylife
Cell phone use is not a problem unless it cause reckless driving.

Uh, no.

And it is not the same as DUI.

Trying reading next time.

I said in CA reckless driving violations are nearly as severe and DUI. This is a good law and covers street racing etc.

23 posted on 08/16/2011 9:04:40 PM PDT by dragnet2 (Diversion and evasion are tools of deceit)
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To: unixfox

Hey, here’s an idea… if you don’t WANT them to get more revenues: DON’T TEXT WHILE DRIVING.


24 posted on 08/16/2011 9:37:01 PM PDT by newzjunkey
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To: WoofDog123

What about C.B. Radios? What is the difference in talking on one of them and a cellphone?


25 posted on 08/16/2011 9:49:07 PM PDT by Lurkina.n.Learnin (The democratic party is the greatest cargo cult in history.)
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To: unixfox
It's ALL about revenue. They have to find more ways to keep feeding their insatiable appetite for more programs, more freebies, and their ILLEGAL aliens.

Stupid people should be made to pay more for government as part of the penalty for stupidity. Along with a good flogging a la Singapore, something we should adopt in this country.
26 posted on 08/16/2011 11:44:38 PM PDT by Cheburashka (If found, please return this Ring of Power to Sauron, Lord of Darkness. Return postage guaranteed.)
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To: svcw
What about a person talking to a passenger? Or say a mom dealing with a screaming baby trapped in their car seat? Or a person eating a sandwich, drinking a coffee? What is it about cell phones that you don’t like?

If they distract the diver, all constitute reckless driving. All should be punished.

If the baby's crying, stop the car and deal with it.

27 posted on 08/16/2011 11:48:23 PM PDT by Cheburashka (If found, please return this Ring of Power to Sauron, Lord of Darkness. Return postage guaranteed.)
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To: SeekAndFind

I would think it a simple programming function for the cellular provider to make the phone inoperable above a walking speed or to ring and then be answered when not moving.
But then, that would solve the problem...


28 posted on 08/17/2011 12:00:23 AM PDT by Sixpackplymouth
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To: Cheburashka

The government should step in at the VERY moment one’s actions endanger society as a whole.


29 posted on 08/17/2011 1:22:43 AM PDT by raygun (http://bastiat.org/en/the_law DOT html)
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To: Lurkina.n.Learnin

someone else can probalby put it in words better than me, but for the most part cb chatter is not a CONVERSATION directed at you every time you finish talking. it is more like listening to a telegraph. you talk *when convenient, with possibly long delays between comments*, then put the mic down and see what noises come out of the box, if any. The parts of the brain and attention it uses do seem substantially different.


30 posted on 08/17/2011 6:39:35 AM PDT by WoofDog123
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To: SeekAndFind
“Bicyclists also have to abide by the rules of the road,” Simitian said

It's about damn time.

31 posted on 08/17/2011 6:41:34 AM PDT by Texas Eagle (If it wasn't for double-standards, Liberals would have no standards at all -- Texas Eagle)
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