SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – California may put the brakes on drivers who are texting behind the wheel with or without a hands-free device.
The technology to text and drive hands-free is legal and available in smart phones and new cars and trucks, but one lawmaker’s personal tragedy has him fighting to ban it all together.
Thanks to technology like the iPhone’s Siri application, all you have to do is speak your text messages and the words go to your family and friends.
“This is the first year for the Dodges to come out with the voice-activated texting,” said car salesperson Mark Peterson.
But California Assemblyman Jim Frazier’s (D-Oakley) Assembly Bill 313 will ban hands-free texting in California.
“The new car manufacturers have the technology that’s out there right now, but I’m not supportive of it,” said Frazier.
However, Frazier says the new technology is still a distraction to drivers. Frazier’s daughter died in a traffic accident and another was badly hurt. So, Frazier turned highway safety into his highest priority.
“I feel it’s my duty as a parent who’s gone through this to prevent others from doing this,” he said. “It’s a club people don’t want to be in.”
Back at the dealership, Peterson says the technology in the cars he sells makes hands-free texting safer than turning on the air conditioner.
Frazier’s bill is headed to the transportation committee. He’s calling for a $20 fine for a first offense.