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What is the penalty in Michigan for texting while driving?

In our last post, we talked about self-driving and autonomous vehicles, and how these vehicles are poised to change the way we think about getting from point A to point B. Self-driving cars will also dramatically change safety out on the roads, as these vehicles are supposed to cut down on the number of accidents that occur by significant numbers. If that does happen, they will be a massive breakthrough.

However, there is an underlying point about self-driving cars that needs to be made. Human error contributes to so many accidents out on the road, and in recent years, distracted driving has been a major contributor to human errors behind the wheel. People are choosing to take their attention off the road -- while driving at speeds that can cause serious accidents -- and placing it on their cell phones. It is madness.

Many states have responded by enacting new laws that prohibit distracted driving. Michigan passed a law in 2010 that banned texting while driving. You are not allowed to read, send, or type a text message while driving here. If you do text and drive in Michigan, you will be fined $100 for your first offense, and then $200 for each subsequent offense.

But there shouldn't be any subsequent offenses, let alone a first time offense. Texting while driving is a dangerous activity. Cell phone use in general is really dangerous. When you are behind the wheel of a car, you should only be focused on the road. Anything else is irrelevant.

Source: Michigan State Police, "Distracted Driving," Accessed Feb. 14, 2018

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