Florida Senate - 2019 COMMITTEE AMENDMENT
Bill No. SB 76
Senate . House
Comm: RCS .
The Committee on Infrastructure and Security (Simpson)
recommended the following:
1 Senate Amendment (with title amendment)
3 Delete everything after the enacting clause
4 and insert:
5 Section 1. Section 316.305, Florida Statutes, is amended to
7 316.305 Driving while distracted
8 devices; prohibition.—
9 (1) This section may be cited as the “Florida Driving Ban
10 on Texting While Distracted Driving Law.”
11 (2) For purposes of this section, the term:
12 (a) “Driving while distracted” means the inattentive
13 operation of a motor vehicle. Inattentive or distracted driving
14 conduct includes reading, writing, performing personal grooming,
15 applying a beauty aid or similar products, interacting with pets
16 or unsecured cargo, using a personal wireless communications
17 device, or engaging in any other activity, conduct, task, or
18 action that causes distraction.
19 (b) “Wireless communications device” means any handheld
20 device that is designed or intended to receive or transmit text-
21 or character-based messages, to record or view images, to access
22 or store data, or to connect to the Internet or any
23 communications service, as defined in s. 812.15, or which allows
24 text communications. The term includes, but is not limited to, a
25 cell phone, a tablet, a laptop, a two-way messaging device, or
26 an electronic game that is used or capable of being used in a
27 handheld manner. The term does not include a safety, security,
28 or convenience feature built into a motor vehicle which does not
29 require the use of a handheld device.
30 (3) (2) It is the intent of the Legislature to:
31 (a) Improve roadway safety for all vehicle operators,
32 vehicle passengers, bicyclists, pedestrians, and other road
34 (b) Prevent crashes related to the act of driving while
35 distracted when operating text messaging while driving a motor
37 (c) Reduce injuries, deaths, property damage, health care
38 costs, health insurance rates, and automobile insurance rates
39 related to motor vehicle crashes.
40 (d) Authorize law enforcement officers to stop motor
41 vehicles and issue citations as a secondary offense to persons
42 who are texting while driving while distracted.
43 (4) (3)(a) A person may not operate a motor vehicle when
44 driving while distracted while manually typing or entering
45 multiple letters, numbers, symbols, or other characters into a
46 wireless communications device or while sending or reading data
47 on such a device for the purpose of nonvoice interpersonal
48 communication, including, but not limited to, communication
49 methods known as texting, e-mailing, and instant messaging. As
50 used in this section, the term “wireless communications device”
51 means any handheld device used or capable of being used in a
52 handheld manner, that is designed or intended to receive or
53 transmit text or character-based messages, access or store data,
54 or connect to the Internet or any communications service as
55 defined in s. 812.15 and that allows text communications. For
56 the purposes of this paragraph, a motor vehicle that is
57 stationary is not being operated and is not subject to the
58 prohibition in this paragraph.
59 (b) Paragraph (a) does not apply to a motor vehicle
60 operator who is:
61 1. Performing official duties as an operator of an
62 authorized emergency vehicle as defined in s. 322.01, a law
63 enforcement or fire service professional, or an emergency
64 medical services professional.
65 2. Reporting an emergency or criminal or suspicious
66 activity to law enforcement authorities.
67 3. Receiving messages that are:
68 a. Related to the operation or navigation of the motor
70 b. Safety-related information, including emergency,
71 traffic, or weather alerts;
72 c. Data used primarily by the motor vehicle; or
73 d. Radio broadcasts.
74 4. Using a device or system in a hands-free manner for
75 navigation purposes.
76 5. Using a wireless communications device hands-free or
77 hands-free in voice-operated mode, including, but not limited
78 to, a factory-installed or after-market Bluetooth device
79 Conducting wireless interpersonal communication that does not
80 require manual entry of multiple letters, numbers, or symbols,
81 except to activate, deactivate, or initiate a feature or
83 6. Conducting wireless interpersonal communication that
84 does not require reading text messages, except to activate,
85 deactivate, or initiate a feature or function.
86 6. 7. Operating an autonomous vehicle, as defined in s.
87 316.003, in autonomous mode.
88 (c) Only in the event of a crash resulting in death or
89 serious bodily injury, as defined in s. 316.027 personal injury,
90 a user’s billing records for a wireless communications device or
91 the testimony of or written statements from appropriate
92 authorities receiving such messages may be admissible as
93 evidence in any proceeding to determine whether a violation of
94 paragraph (a) has been committed.
95 (d) Law enforcement officers must indicate the type of
96 distraction in the comment section of the uniform traffic
98 (5) (4)(a) Any person who violates this section commits a
99 noncriminal traffic infraction, punishable as a moving
100 violation, as provided in chapter 318, and shall have 3 points
101 assessed against his or her driver license as set forth in s.
102 322.27. For a first offense of this section, in lieu of the
103 penalty specified in s. 318.18 and the assessment of points, a
104 person who violates this section may elect to participate in a
105 distracted driving safety program approved by the Department of
106 Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. Upon completion of such
107 program, the penalty specified in s. 318.18 and associated costs
108 may be waived by the clerk of the court and the assessment of
109 points must be waived Any person who violates paragraph (3)(a)
110 commits a noncriminal traffic infraction, punishable as a
111 nonmoving violation as provided in chapter 318.
112 (b) Any person who commits a second or subsequent violation
113 of paragraph (3)(a) within 5 years after the date of a prior
114 conviction for a violation of paragraph (3)(a) commits a
115 noncriminal traffic infraction, punishable as a moving violation
116 as provided in chapter 318.
117 (6) (5) Notwithstanding s. 318.21, all proceeds collected
118 pursuant to s. 318.18 for violations of this section must be
119 remitted to the Department of Revenue for deposit into the
120 Emergency Medical Services Trust Fund of the Department of
121 Health Enforcement of this section by state or local law
122 enforcement agencies must be accomplished only as a secondary
123 action when an operator of a motor vehicle has been detained for
124 a suspected violation of another provision of this chapter,
125 chapter 320, or chapter 322.
126 Section 2. This act shall take affect October 1, 2019.
128 ================= T I T L E A M E N D M E N T ================
129 And the title is amended as follows:
130 Delete everything before the enacting clause
131 and insert:
132 A bill to be entitled
133 An act relating to driving while distracted; amending
134 s. 316.305, F.S.; revising the short title; defining
135 the term “driving while distracted”; redefining the
136 term “wireless communications device”; revising
137 legislative intent; prohibiting a person from
138 operating a motor vehicle when driving while
139 distracted; revising exceptions to such prohibition;
140 revising crash results for which a user’s billing
141 records for a wireless communications device or the
142 testimony of or written statements from certain
143 authorities are admissible as evidence; requiring that
144 law enforcement officers indicate specified
145 information in the uniform traffic citation; providing
146 penalties for driving while distracted; authorizing
147 participation in a distracted driving safety program
148 for a first offense, in lieu of specified penalties;
149 requiring the deposit of fines into the Emergency
150 Medical Services Trust Fund; deleting a provision
151 requiring that enforcement of this section be
152 accomplished only as a secondary action; providing an
153 effective date.