The issue of texting while driving has attracted national attention recently, and Missouri is no exception. Governor Jay Nixon has publicly noted that he intends to make highway safety a priority, and this includes expanding Missouri’s law on texting and driving.
Missouri legislators have pre-filed bills for the session that begins in January 2011. One of the bills would change Missouri’s current texting while driving ban so that it applies to all drivers.
Missouri Distracted Driving Laws
Missouri currently places no restrictions on the use of cell phones while driving.
Drivers 21 and younger are prohibited from texting while driving. This includes sending, reading or writing a text message or e-mail. This is a primary offense. A primary offense is one for which police can pull over a driver without witnessing any other traffic offense. The fine is $200.
Kansas Distracted Driving Laws
The laws on driving and cell phones are stricter in Kansas. Kansas does not ban the use of cell phones for all drivers, but those with learner’s permits and intermediate licenses are restricted.
Kansas prohibits all drivers from texting while driving. This is a primary offense. Starting in January, drivers will have to pay a $60 fine for texting while driving.
The Consequences of Texting While Driving
The aftermath of texting while driving can be much more serious than a moderate fine. Distracted driving is responsible for numerous avoidable motor vehicle accidents and serious injuries on Missouri and Kansas highways.
Whether or not Missouri’s law is expanded to cover all drivers, like Kansas’ law, everyone should be aware of the dangers presented by distracted driving.
Source: Missouri’s Governor to Expand Law Against Texting and Driving