CAUGHT: Texting and driving
Tue, 05 Jul 2011 22:14:31 GMT —
You've have heard about our Just Let It Ring campaign and know how dangerous it is to text and drive.
But what happens when a police officer actually catches you in the act and you're caught breaking the law?
Jim Whitfield reports that the laws are different in Illinois, Missouri and Iowa for this Just Let It Ring special report.
How many times have you been driving down the street and seen another driver just banging away on their cell phone keypad. You know what I mean and you wonder why that person hasn't gotten into an accident and injured themselves or someone else. It's been a law on the books in the Tri-State area for over a year and police agencies on both sides of the river say they have written tickets for texting and driving.
"You know a lot of times we see distracted driving the same as we see drunk driving. When you see a DUI on the roadway, you see them swerving in the lanes, you see them driving too slowly, you see t hem following too close," said Trooper Mike Kindhart with the Illinois State Police. "You see them coming to a stop sign, having to apply the brakes quickly. We see the same thing out texting and driving because it's a distraction to driver."
I asked him how hard it is to actually catch someone texting and driving and he told me that police agencies can subpoena cell phone records to determine if the driver of a car involved in a traffic crash or other incident was on their phone when the incident took place
"Now we're seeing these motorists have a hand on the steering wheel, with the cell phone down towards their legs or their lap area and they're having to look down, look back up, look down, look back up. Which is now making it a hidden danger because now they're trying to hide what they're trying to do instead of making it completely visible." said Kindhart.
So instead of just pulling over to the side of the road and taking a call or finishing a text, people continue to break the law and choose not to follow the saying "Just Let It Ring."
Tomorrow, we'll hear from a prosecutor about what fines and penalties there are associated with a ticket when someone is caught texting while driving.
Take the pledge right now to Just Let It Ring and you could save lives and even possibly win a new car! Click here for more details.