DORAL, FL – From October 1, Florida Statutes will include a law stating that drivers must keep their hands on the wheel while passing through school crossing, school zone or work zone areas.
This new law refers specifically to the use of wireless communications devices in a handheld manner, such as tablets, laptops, two-way messaging devices or electronic games.
Law enforcement officers will stop vehicles and issue citations to drivers who fail to comply with this new regulation. It should be noted that drivers won’t be fined when using these devices in a switched off car when parking in permit school zone areas.
However, drivers must keep their hands on the wheel at stationary cars meaning they are not allowed to use cell phones or any other device while waiting in a traffic light, stop signs or in traffic jams.
Regarding work zones, the law will only be applicable if construction personnel are present or are operating equipment on the road or immediately adjacent to the work zone area.
Let’s not forget that from July 1, using cell phones while driving is considered a major driving offense. These devices can only be used hands-free or via bluetooth as they are considered to be a distraction at any time of driving and can cause accidents.
In fact, in 2016 there were nearly 50,000 accidents in Florida due to distracting driving. In those accidents, 233 people died.
Drivers who use their cell phones will face a first offense fine of $ 30. A second infraction will cost drivers $ 60 plus court costs and fees, and points added to the license.