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Distracted driving subject of two bills

Posted On Thu, November 5, 2009

A few bills are being considered in Congress that look to reduce distracted driving, which can lead to higher auto insurance prices through an increase in accidents.

According to a Consumer Reports blog, two measures are being considered by lawmakers. One bill, the Distracted Driving Prevention Act of 2009, has been co-sponsored by a number of senators. If passed, states could be open to incentives from the federal government for enacting laws against distracted driving, which would include sending text messages.

In order to qualify for the incentives put forward by the bill, state's legislation would have to make the violation a primary offense, which would give law enforcement the ability to pull people over for it. States would also have to add distracted driving as a subject on their licensing exams.

The money for the grants will not involve an additional financial burden as it will come from redirecting unused surpluses from the seat-belt safety program," Consumer Reports noted.

Another bill being considered by senators is the ALERT Drivers Act of 2009, which would penalize states through reduced federal highway funds if they do not enact laws regarding distracted driving.

Recently, the U.S. Department of Transportation held a summit that addressed distracted driving. As a result, rules were enacted by the government that prohibit federal employees from texting while driving on official business.
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