No texting while driving law approaches 2 year mark

By: Olga Michail Email
By: Olga Michail Email

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- If you're driving 55-miles-an-hour and it takes you about 5-seconds to finish a text message, you've likely gone 300-feet without paying attention to the road.
Now, troopers say not everyone is paying attention to a law designed to keep everyone on the road safe.

"In Jackson county, we had a rollover down there, and when we talked to the subject, they spoke about the fact that: yes, I was actually texting, I lost control of my vehicle and rolled over. Thanks goodness it wasn't a serious injury, but we have had that,” said State Patrol Lieutenant Jeff Lorentz.

"I've known a couple of people that have gotten in car accidents because of that, it was definitely a wake-up call for me,” said driver Amy Roehl.

“No texting while driving” is something drivers hear over and over again, and many still do it, regardless of the fact that it has been illegal in Wisconsin for nearly two years.

"I would definitely say I am pretty attached to my phone, like most people my age, and society these days… we are just really attached to technology."

But, surprisingly enough, younger people are not the only people texting and driving, adults do it too.

"75% of students say they have witnessed their parents texting, so I am a little concerned about the example that it is being set here, because it is a very dangerous habit to be getting into,” said Lorentz.

But, Lorenz says because of the law people are more alert, more aware of the dangers of texting and driving, and that is one of the most important things.

"It's a weapon that you're driving…and you have to be very careful with it," said driver Lynette Roehl.

Lorentz says no texting while driving is an on-going process, and even though a lot of people are on-board with the law, not everyone seems to follow it.

"Until you get the 100 compliance, you are still going to work at it, and we are nowhere near that," said Lorentz.

Lorenz says that texting and driving is habit-forming. He says most people are more than capable of stopping themselves when they get an urge to respond to a text. Others who can’t could get fined 100-dollars or more.

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