Traffic Defense Loudoun County VA
If you have driven in traffic around Loudoun County recently, you see examples of distracted driving everywhere. In 2013 there have been 325 fatalities and more than 42,000 vehicle crashes on Virginia roadways. According to AAA Mid-Atlantic, almost 21% of these involve distracted driving. In the news there are daily reports of studies, amazing statistics, and frightening possibilities, especially for younger drivers who have almost Pavlovian relationships with their phones. Obviously, something had to be done to protect everyone on and near the roadway.
Enter the Virginia General Assembly and Virginia Code Section 46.2-1078.1, which states:
Texting while driving is a traffic infraction punishable by a $125 fine to “[m]anually enter multiple letters or text in the device as a means of communicating with another person” or “[r]ead any email or text message transmitted to the device or stored within the device.”
Research by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the National Safety Council shows texting drivers are 23 times more likely to lose control of their vehicle which leads to at least 100,000 accidents per year. Other studies show a distinct correlation between the impaired driving of someone under the influence and a motorist who exhibits impairment due to texting and driving.
The new law took effect July 1. But officials are concerned enforcement will be a challenge for the following reasons:
1. The new law only applies when a driver is texting or emailing and the vehicle is in motion.
2. The use of GPS, music programs and other phone applications is not prohibited.
3. The use of voice-controlled apps will not be affected.
4. Drivers have the right to refuse to surrender their cell phones when stopped.
Make no mistake, though, if you’re texting while driving and a law enforcement official has reasonable suspicion you’re violating the new law, they will pull you over. Until we see what the Commonwealth’s Attorneys need before they proceed with prosecution, and what type of evidence judges require, enforcement and trial law will be murky.
In this situation, you need a criminal defense lawyer with litigation experience in traffic law in Loudoun County, VA. Contact the dedicated traffic attorneys at the law firm of Boone Beale. When you select Boone Beale for legal representation we make sure your case comes first.