Going into 2013, drivers across the country can expect to see more police enforcement when it comes to texting while driving. The idea is that drivers who are ticketed will think twice before reading or sending off a text while driving again. They will now understand that not only are they putting others at danger by texting while driving, but that it is against the law too. The hope is this will result in less motor vehicle accidents caused by drivers who are distracted by their cellphones.
When looking at the issue, experts claim that in close to 80 percent of all crashes, drivers were not paying attention for the three seconds leading up to the crash. With literally billions of text messages sent every year, there is a good chance texting played a role in many of those crashes.
In Tennessee -- like in many other states -- texting while driving is illegal. If an officer sees a driver texting while behind the wheel, it is enough of a reason to pull that driver over. And, while enforcing the texting laws used to be somewhat difficult, police say that it is getting easier as more and more drivers are making it blatantly obvious that they are texting.
For example, many drivers will hold a phone right up to their face. Others will have a phone on their lap and just continuously look down. In other cases, police look for signs such as drifting out of lane, failing to drive forward when a light turns green and driving below the posted speed limit.
Additionally, law enforcement in Tennessee has tried to combat texting while driving by having unmarked SUVs on roads that are known to have a high volume of drivers who text. The higher SUV makes it easier for the officer to see what a driver is doing inside of a vehicle.