By: Kirstin Delgado
Columbus, Ga. - SO YOU'RE LATE FOR WORK, YOU GRAB YOUR COFFEE, GET ON THE ROAD AND SAVE SOME TIME BY DOING YOUR MAKE UP IN THE CAR OR CATCHING UP ON THE DAYS HEADLINES BY READING THE NEWSPAPER WHILE DRIVING…SOUNDS CRAZY? NOT TO SGT WYNN, HE'S SEEN IT ALL…
"I've seen drivers riding down the road with a newspaper on the steering wheel...e-mailing is no different than texting because you're sending some type of message..a lot of distractions are an unsafe act, that most definitely you could be stopped and you could be cited/ticketed for these charges."
THERE'S ALSO A MISCONCEPTION THAT AS LONG AS YOU'RE STOPPED AND NOT ACTIVELY DRIVING THAT YOU CAN TEXT OR USE SOCIAL MEDIA,THIS IS UNTRUE
"You're still driving, you may be in a stopped mode, you're still driving even if you're on a stopped mode, waiting for traffic to move forward."
SO NBC 38 VENTURED OUT TO FIND OUT, HOW MANY DRIVERS IN COLUMBUS KNOW THE LAW. THE RESPONSES WE FOUND, MIGHT BE SURPRISING TO SOME, NOT ONLY DID MOTORISTS KNOW THE LAW, THEY WERE IN FIERCE SUPPORT OF IT.
"Certain things you shouldn't do,I mean driving in its self is a risk..When you're texting I mean that's an even greater risk that you could injure yourself, someone else or anybody."
"I don't feel that nothing is that important that you can't wait until you're in a designated area to talk on the phone and your jeopardizing other people's lives."
"I think the rule of thump is that you should just put your phone in your purse or in the passenger seat and just leave it alone until you get some where...you really need to remain focused on the road, where you are going and like I said, other drivers around you."
DURING OUR 1 HOUR SURVEY, WE FOUND 95 DRIVERS DOING EVERYTHING FROM EATING TO DOING MAKE UP WHILE ACTIVELY DRIVING. WHILE OFFICERS DO NOT ENCOURAGE THIS BEHAVIOR, THEY DO UNDERSTAND THAT DRIVING HAS ITS DISTRACTIONS
"This is not a charge that we're trying to get out and look for assumptions, we want to make sure that something is 100% there but the main thing we're trying to do is just stop it. You know you have fatalities and things like this and you starting wondering well why did they leave the roadway like that and there is not explanation for it."
OFFENSES FOR TEXTING AND DRIVING CAN RANGE FROM A SIMPLE WARNING OR CITATION TO VEHICULAR MANSLAUGHTER CHARGES IF A PERSON IN ANOTHER VEHICLE DIES IN A CRASH WHERE THE AT FAULT DRIVER WAS DRIVING DISTRACTED