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Governor signs new distracted driving bill

For most people in Colorado, a cellphone has become something that is rarely out of an arm's reach or an eye's glance. The integration of these tools into daily life cannot be disputed and there can be benefits associated with that at times in terms of convenience if nothing else. However, there is also a very serious danger associated with the heavy reliance on smartphones in some situations, namely when a person is driving a vehicle.

Colorado has had a law in place for a while that makes it illegal for people to send or receive text messages while they are driving cars, trucks or other motor vehicles. Now, however, the state is stepping things up with a new law that makes the penalties for texting while driving even stronger. The goal of the new law is ultimately to keep more people safe by preventing the action that is said to lead to so many accidents.

The California Department of Transportation indicates that as many as 17 percent of crashes in the states involve some form of distracted driving as 68 people are believed to have died in these accidents in 2015 alone. The new law increases the fine for distracted driving by six times over the original for a first offense and by three times over the original for a second. It also quadruples the number of points assessed on drivers' licenses.

When involved in an accident that may have been caused by a driver who was using a phone, Colorado residents may learn about their compensation options by talking with an attorney.

Source: The Pueblo-Chieftan, "Colorado increases penalties for texting and driving violations," Ryan Severance, June 2, 2017

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