Understanding Georgia's Distracted Driver Laws

Texting while driving has quickly become a hot topic both in Georgia and across the nation. As the numbers of texting-related accidents climbs, lawmakers are taking aggressive steps to crack down on distracted drivers.

Although texting is the poster child for distractions behind the wheel, it is far from the only problem. As such, Georgia’s distracted driving laws address a large number of potential distractions.

What Is Considered a Distraction Under Georgia Law?

Cell phone usage, particularly texting, is definitely considered a distraction for drivers. In fact, text messaging was specifically banned for all drivers in the state as of July 1, 2010. However, additional distractions may still be considered unlawful due to the inclusive language of the law. Code Section 40-6-241 has been revised to include the following:

“A driver… shall not engage in any actions which shall distract such driver from the safe operation of such vehicle…”

While the section goes on to name specific exceptions, including a radio, CB radio, and mobile telephone, it does not clearly define what a distraction may include. As a result, both the court and law enforcement have tremendous power to determine what is and is not an unlawful distraction.

Different Rules for Minors & School Bus Drivers

While no drivers are permitted to text under Georgia state law, most adult drivers are permitted to use a hand-held mobile phone for calls. However, novice drivers (all drivers under 18 years of age) and school bus drivers are not permitted to use cell phones. This is a primary enforcement law, meaning a police officer can issue a citation without any other traffic offense occurring.

Injured in Marietta? Call Jones & Swanson Today

Since distracted driver laws in Georgia can leave room for interpretation, it’s vital to contact our skilled Marietta car accident attorneys immediately. Our experienced team can help you build a maximally effective case, and can help demonstrate fault by proving that the other driver was distracted at the time of the accident.

Don’t take chances with your compensation. Call our experienced Marietta injury lawyers at Jones & Swanson.