New Law Makes AZ Roads Safer

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Photo by Luke Hertel

Arizona has become the 48th state to pass texting and driving legislation which went to effect on January 1, 2021. The goal of this law is to stop the spread of accidents caused by distracted driving all throughout Arizona. Due to this law, anyone caught with a phone in their hands while on the road is eligible for a fine. 

“I like the law because whenever I’m the passenger in my friend’s car and they are changing songs or on their phone while driving in general, it makes me nervous,” senior Alex Williams said. 

The likelihood of teenagers being in distracted driving accidents is significantly higher than those of other ages. Especially when a passenger is in the car as well, there is no reason to put anyone at risk by looking at a phone.

The issue with many new laws is how they will be enforced. Not having the money or time is usually the biggest issue when it comes to these more circumstance laws. Luckily, the Phoenix Police Department received a large grant in order to help them enforce this law.

“[I think] it’s necessary because thousands of people have got into preventable car accidents by being distracted by their phone,” Williams said.

Distracted drivers are much more dangerous than those who are impaired, due to them simply not looking at the road while driving. So much so that driving while distracted for only a couple of seconds is the equivalent of driving the entire length of a football field while blindfolded.

The punishment for distracted driving will be a fine varying from $75-$149 on the first offence to as much as $250 on all subsequent offences. As such, by penalizing individuals who put themselves and others at this risk, it may be possible to see a decrease in the number of accidents caused by distracted driving.

Ultimelty, this law’s effectiveness is in the hands of the Police Department. Thanks to the grant and clear guidelines for the law, it is possible for this law to be effective.

Just because this law is not unique to Corona, doesn’t mean that Corona students and staff can’t cut down on their distracted driving. The quickest way to do so is to be educated and use that information to teach others. The CDC has great resources to get educated at this website.

Distracted driving is a hard thing to define exactly, however Arizona is making steps to define and subsequently eliminate it from the local streets.