Even though states are cracking down on texting while driving by passing more stringent laws, it's ultimately up to law enforcement officials to put these laws into motion. They're finding that while these laws are great in theory, they're actually extremely difficult to actually enforce. Police officers are having a really hard time proving that someone was in fact texting while driving, and not just "talking" on their hand-held cell phone which is still legal in some states.
In 2007, a young girl was killed when a 17 year old driver smashed into the side of her car without so much as a tap to the brakes. The female driver was obviously distracted when the accident happened but without having witness accounts or without the driving admitting to texting, the victim's family will never know exactly why their daughter was killed that fateful night.
The only way law enforcement can accurately prove that a driver was texting when an accident occurred, is to subpoena their cell phone records which is usually only done in serious accidents where a fatality is involved. Some states have made texting while driving a primary offense, meaning that police officers can pull a driver over if they notice they are texting. Many states however only list texting as a secondary offense. This means that officers need to have another reason to pull over drivers, such as speeding or running a red light.
Even though the law is difficult to enforce, as a personal injury lawyer Seattle, I have to agree that it's at least better than having no law in place. If lawmakers hadn't passed any laws regarding texting while driving, they would be ignoring the fact that this is a growing epidemic in our country, and it's here to stay. Often times, technology develops faster than the laws can keep up with but our lawmakers are at least taking a step in the right direction. Educating the public on the dangers of texting while driving and encouraging employers to ban workers from texting while driving are other ways we can reduce the amounts of accidents caused by such distracted driving. At the law offices of Kirk Bernard, we have seen a growing number of accidents caused by drivers who are text messaging behind the wheel.