Alabama Legislature Considering Hands-Free Law
ALABAMA – According to an online news report from wbrc.com, the Alabama Legislature is considering bringing a Hands-Free bill to vote. The bill, if passed, would ban the use of handheld cell phone use while driving in the state of Alabama. The bill is set for a possible vote in the Alabama House.*
WBRC reports that the Hands-Free bill is named after a 17-year-old girl who was killed in a distracted driving accident in 2017. The teen was sending a text message on her phone and crashed into the back of a tractor-trailer. The girl’s mother has been instrumental in the creation of the bill, which she says possibly could have saved her daughter’s life.
“A year and a half ago could have made the difference if my daughter was here or not,” the mother said. “I know so many people, it’s not just for me and my family, my daughter. There are so many people that are just waiting to see this passed.”
The bill has gone through back-and-forth editing among lawmakers in the state, some of which the teen’s mother did not support. One provision added during this phase was limiting applicability of the law to only drivers age 18 years or younger.
“My reaction was to take my daughter’s name off,” the mother said of the age limit on the law. “I didn’t want to be associated with that particular bill. I didn’t agree with it at all.”
In its most recent version, only law enforcement officers, emergency responders, doctors, and rideshare drivers are exempted. As of the time of the WBRC report, no official vote had yet been announced for the bill.
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