Heading to Georgia? Put Down That Cell Phone Or You Might Get A Ticket

Jul 3, 2018

A new law in Georgia will affect Floridians whose vacation plans include a drive north this summer.

Georgia’s new hands-free law makes it illegal to hold a cell phone while a vehicle is moving.

On WJCT’s First Coast Connect Tuesday, Jacksonville lawyer Wayne Hogan said he’s all for it.

“It’s a step, maybe two steps, beyond the baby step Florida took when it made texting a secondary offense. Point being that the officer can’t stop the person if they think they’re texting. In Georgia, it is a primary offense.”

Hogan gives driver-safety talks to groups around the First Coast and has long called for making texting-while-driving a primary offense in Florida as well.

However, Florida lawmakers this year rejected a bill that would have done just that.  Fleming Island Republican Senator Rob Bradley says the proposal went too far.

“The bill that we considered allowed them to pull you over for doing something that, under current law and the bill itself is a perfectly legal activity, which is looking down at your phone to get directions.”

Georgia police have the option of issuing warnings to drivers who violate the new hands-free law while people adapt to the new restriction there.