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Scott to sign texting ban

by John Kennedy | May 24th, 2013

Gov. Rick Scott is ready to make Florida the nation’s 40th state to smackdown smartphones — saying he will sign legislation next week to ban texting while driving.

“As a father and a grandfather, texting while driving is something that concerns me when my loved ones are on the road,” Scott said Friday. “The 100 days between Memorial Day and Labor Day are known as the deadliest days on the road for teenagers. We must do everything we can at the state level to keep our teenagers and everyone on our roads safe.”

Scott plans to sign the texting ban, SB 52, on Tuesday at Alonzo and Tracy Mourning Senior High School in Miami.

The legislation would make texting while driving a secondary offense. Motorists could be ticketed only if law enforcement officials stopped them for another reason, like careless driving.

A ticket could cost first-time offenders $30, plus court costs. But the bill includes exemptions that allow motorists to use phones to check maps, use voice-commands or listen to the radio through their phones.

Drivers also could text while stopped at a light, under the legislation. Talking on a cell phone would not be restricted.

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