A bill introduced this session would outlaw use of cell phones while driving – unless the driver is using the hands-free option.
HB 229 by Rep. Mike Huval, R-Breaux Bridge, has been sent to committee. It will have to pass committees in both chambers, then pass both chambers, before it becomes law. It can be amended at any step of the process, as well.
The bill would change present law – which outlaws use of devices in a school zone – to make it illegal to use your phone while driving at any time. That includes dialing a number by hand. If the driver uses a hands-free option, it would be OK, the way the law is written today. You can read the bill for yourself by scrolling down.
According to state transportation officials, there have been 68 fatal crashes in the past three years attributed to distracted driving, just in Acadiana.
“There could be some type of item in the roadway that everyone else is missing except for you because you’re not paying attention. And so that’s what we’re trying to hit home. Is that it’s just not worth it. Put the device down, just take your time. It can wait. It really can,” said Deidra Druilhet, Communications Director for the Acadiana Planning Commission.
Here’s the bill as it stands on April 23, 2019: