Should Tennessee’s Texting Law Be Stronger?
Everyone knows that texting while driving can be dangerous, but despite this, some people still do it. What are the penalties for texting while driving in Tennessee? Well, if you’re caught texting while driving, the fine is $50, and points go on your license if you’ve violated another traffic law at the same time.
The question is, should Tennessee’s texting while driving law be stronger than it is currently? According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Tennessee’s texting law isn’t strong enough, and as a result, Tennessee does not receive any of the funds that the NHTSA is giving out to states with qualified distracted-driving laws.
To qualify for the NHTSA grant, a texting-while-driving law must include in its definition of “texting while driving” the act of sending or receiving electronic messages not only while your vehicle is in motion, but also when it’s not in motion. This means the law prohibits you from texting even when your vehicle has stopped. The law must also escalate penalties for repeat offenders, which Tennessee law currently doesn’t do.
This year, only seven states — Arkansas, Georgia, Maine, Minnesota, North Dakota, Rhode Island and West Virginia — and Guam were awarded the NHTSA texting-while-driving grants. In Georgia, drivers are prohibited from texting even when their vehicles are stopped.
Distracted driving, and texting while driving in particular, is often the cause of serious accidents. If you’ve suffered an injury as a result of an accident caused by texting while driving, speak with an experienced Tennessee car accident attorney who can advise you on your options.