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What are the consequences of texting while driving in Louisiana?

As a Louisiana driver, you probably know that it has been illegal to text while driving since 2008. What you may not be aware of, however, is that as of last June, the fines associated with texting while driving increased dramatically. Hands Free Info advises that if a law enforcement officer catches you texting while behind the wheel and this if your first offense, you will face a $500 fine. That fine will increase to $1,000 each subsequent time you are caught texting while driving.

Texting is not the only activity that Louisiana law prohibits you from doing. Other prohibited activities include the following:

  • Using social media
  • Using a cellphone or computer while driving in a school zone during posted hours
  • Using any type of a wireless device any time you are driving if you are under 18 years of age
  • Using a hand-held device any time you are driving if you have a learner’s or intermediate license

If you are a minor or a school bus driver, you could face even higher fines and your driver’s license could be suspended for 60 days if you are caught breaking these Louisiana distracted driving laws.

Louisiana insurance rates

Louisiana has the fourth highest automobile insurance rate in the nation. The reason is the high number of vehicular crashes that occur in this state, many of which involve cellphone usage. The Highway Safety Research Group at Louisiana State University reported that in the first half of 2016 alone, 972 vehicle crashes were linked to drivers who were using their cellphones at the time of the crash, and 331 of those crashes resulted in injuries to drivers or passengers.

This information is only intended to educate and should not be interpreted as legal advice.

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McGlynn, Glisson & Mouton
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