skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Friday, June 21, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Expert warns of upcoming threats to democracy across the nation; Judge in Trump documents case rejects suggestions to step aside; NC businesses fear effects of 'bathroom bill'; Report says restaurants allow abuse, disease risk at MD animal farms.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

A congresswoman celebrates Biden protections for mixed status families, Louisiana's Ten Commandments law faces an inevitable legal challenge, and a senator moves to repeal the strict 19th century anti-obscenity and anti-abortion Comstock Act.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Rural educators say they need support to teach kids social issues, rural businesses can suffer when dollar stores come to town, prairie states like South Dakota are getting help to protect grasslands and a Minnesota town claims the oldest rural Pride Festival.

WA Lawmakers Propose "Driving Under the Influence of Electronics" Act

play audio
Play

Wednesday, February 22, 2017   

OLYMPIA, Wash. – State lawmakers want to stop a habit that could be as harmful to Washingtonians as drinking and driving: using a cell phone while driving. Deaths from distracted driving have been on the rise in Washington state. Between 2014 and 2015, deaths rose from 130 to 171.

House Bill 1371, known as the Driving Under the Influence of Electronics Act, seeks to curb that by increasing the penalties for drivers caught on their phones.

Larry Shannon, the government affairs director for the Washington State Association for Justice, points to a study that showed drivers distracted by their phones have reaction times equivalent to someone whose blood-alcohol level is two-and-a-half times the legal limit.

"What's different, though, is if you're driving while you're impaired, you're impaired and you should not be behind the wheel," he said. "If you are driving while distracted, all you have to do is put that instrument down and you will regain your senses and your reaction time almost immediately."

The measure has received bipartisan support from lawmakers. It would increase fines for distracted driving and report the offense to courts and insurance companies, potentially leading to increased insurance rates.

Washington state has a law against texting while driving, but it doesn't ban any other uses of phones. Sponsors of the bill call the old law a flip-phone law in the smartphone era. During a public hearing on the bill at the beginning of the month, Shannon notes an unusual coalition of interests came together to support it.

"The insurance industry and the trial lawyers' association coming together to both strongly support this," he added. "Some great testimony from the construction industry about the dangers that distracted driving poses to a lot of their workers out along our roadways and highways in the state."

Shannon also notes a campaign on the website "EndDD.org." Sponsored by the Casey Feldman Foundation, the website is offering scholarships to teenagers who come up with the most creative videos warning about the dangers of distracted driving.


get more stories like this via email

more stories
The 2024 Summer U.S. Conference of Mayors in Kansas City, Mo., will be under the leadership of its president, Mayor Hillary Schieve of Reno, Nev., and host Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas.
(SeanPavonePhoto/Adobe Stock)

play sound

Some Michigan mayors are out of the office this week - but still working for their cities. They're at the 92nd meeting of the United States …


Social Issues

play sound

An interim North Dakota legislative committee this week got an update from state leaders on potential moves to reconnect kids in foster care with thei…

Environment

play sound

Eastern Kentucky Power Cooperative is planning two new solar farms to diversify its electric-generation fleet, reducing carbon emissions and meet the …


Ohio resident Jeremy Madden, his wife and their adopted daughter. (Jeremy Madden)

Social Issues

play sound

More employers are offering benefits to adoptive parents, according to a new survey by the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. The amount of paid …

Social Issues

play sound

The Arizona Court of Appeals recently dismissed a case brought by Republican Arizona attorney general candidate Abraham Hamadeh, Republican Cochise …

North Carolina is home to 934,604 small businesses. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

North Carolina's business community is alarmed after Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson praised the controversial House Bill 2, known as the "Bathroom Bill," at …

Social Issues

play sound

Members of the group Radical Elders are participating in a Chicago tech conference this weekend to explain the impact of technology on older Americans…

play sound

Danskammer Energy is no longer seeking an expansion of its Newburgh plant. The original plan called for expanding the company's "peaker plant" meant …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021