Community activist: Penalties for hands-free law aren’t tough enough

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By: Darran Todd | WALB News 10
August 15, 2019

DOUGLAS, Ga. (WALB) -- Last year, Georgia lawmakers enacted the hands-free law to tell drivers to put their phones down and pay attention. But one man says more needs to be done.

“I just wish everybody pay attention to the roads; it is not just bikers. This is everybody who rides on Georgia’s roads; everybody can be a victim,” said Larry Nesmith, community activist.

Nesmith says the hands-free law is not strict enough.

“Our main subject was trying to increase the fines and penalties, because we feel as if the penalty does not fit the crime that is at hand,” Nesmith said.

Those texting and driving can ruin the lives of others, not just their own.

“We are seeing too many fatalities, and although every life matters, it hits home when we have brothers and sisters in our motorcycle community. And we are having to go to funerals and see falling victims families, and explain to them their deceased one was killed by somebody not paying attention,” he said.

Nesmith recalled an incident where a woman died on her way to an event he planned.

“July 14th, we had a stop the bullying event for back to school. While en route, we had a young lady coming from Ben Hill County, coming to participate in our event. Unfortunately, she was in an accident where she was killed by a distracted driver,” Nesmith said.

Nesmith says his goal is simple.

“It is okay to pull over on the side of the road and take care of your business, but pay attention while you are driving please,” Nesmith said.

The first offense for drivers who are caught texting while driving is $50 but It can go all the way up to $150.



 
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