Pennsylvania’s Anti-Texting Law
By Chad Rankin
Pennsylvania law makes it illegal to send, read, or write a text or email while the vehicle is in motion. However, enforcing the law to make other drivers safe from car accidents caused by texting and emailing is very difficult. Pennsylvania police officers have written far fewer citations than they would have liked. In the last two years, police officers have only issued about 2,342 citations statewide.
The problem is that the anti-texting law is full of loopholes to prevent police officers from making the roads safe from texting drivers. For instance, dialing a telephone number while the car is moving is legal. It would be difficult for a police officer to determine that the driver was testing as opposed to dialing a telephone number. To make the police officer’s job even more difficult, they are not automatically permitted to check a driver’s phone to see if the driver was texting or dialing a phone number.
Perhaps the Pennsylvania law should be more restrictive to prevent the use of hand-held devices for any purpose while driving a car as a number of other states have done. Safety should be paramount on this issue given the severe problems caused by distracted driving.
A driver who causes a collision while texting may also be liable to punitive damages. If you or someone you know was injured by a texting driver, contact the attorneys at RG Injury Law for a free legal consultation to determine the full extent of your rights.