Many states are making strides toward the elimination of the dangers of distracted driving – and Arizona is no different.
A bill was recently signed into law in Arizona that directly impacts teen drivers. Starting July 1st, 2018, drivers younger than 18 are prohibited from using any wireless devices, with certain caveats. While the law has limited reach – new drivers younger than 18 who are operating the vehicle under a learner’s permit or are driving during the first six months of their provisional license – it is a critical first step in moving toward a ban on texting while driving.
“New drivers between the ages of 15 ½ and 18 will be prohibited from using cellphones while driving, unless in a specific emergency situation or to listen to audible turn-by-turn navigation,” a local outlet reported. A violation of this law can result in fines and an extension of the six-month period. Subsequent infractions can ultimately result in license suspension.
But Is It Enough?
While Arizona is making strides to protect drivers, it is one of the last states to restrict cellphone use while driving. The vast majority of states have an outright ban on texting and many states do not allow drivers to even talk on the phone unless they are using a hands-free device. Many people are happy that Arizona has enacted the law, but they complain that it is not enough
Focusing the laws on new, teen drivers might strike at the most inexperienced drivers on Arizona streets, but this group is far from the only ones who can fall victim to distractions. Legislation is being proposed to further restrict all drivers from texting while driving. Additionally, eating to personal grooming to talking to passengers, anything that removes attention from the road can lead to a potentially fatal accident. If you or a loved one was injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver, it is wise to know your legal options for monetary compensation.