October 31, 2020
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       Florida Senate - 2010                                     SB 324
       
       
       
       By Senator Baker
       
       
       
       
       20-00053B-10                                           2010324__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to motor vehicle operators; amending
    3         s. 316.304, F.S.; prohibiting a person from writing or
    4         sending a text message on an electronic communications
    5         device while operating a motor vehicle; providing for
    6         enforcement; providing exceptions; providing
    7         penalties; providing an effective date.
    8  
    9  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   10  
   11         Section 1. Section 316.304, Florida Statutes, is amended to
   12  read:
   13         316.304 Using listening or communications devices Wearing
   14  of headsets.—
   15         (1)(a)A No person may not shall operate a vehicle while
   16  wearing a headset, headphone, or other listening device, other
   17  than a hearing aid or instrument for the improvement of
   18  defective human hearing.
   19         (b)(2) This subsection section does not apply to:
   20         1.(a) Any law enforcement officer equipped with any
   21  communication device necessary in performing his or her assigned
   22  duties or to any emergency vehicle operator equipped with any
   23  ear protection device.
   24         2.(b) Any applicant for a license to operate a motorcycle
   25  while taking the examination required by s. 322.12(5).
   26         3.(c) Any person operating a motorcycle who is using a
   27  headset that is installed in a helmet and worn so as to prevent
   28  the speakers from making direct contact with the user’s ears so
   29  that the user can hear surrounding sounds.
   30         4.(d) Any person using a headset in conjunction with a
   31  cellular telephone that only provides sound through only one ear
   32  and allows surrounding sounds to be heard with the other ear.
   33         5.(e) Any person using a headset in conjunction with
   34  communicating with the central base operation that only provides
   35  sound through only one ear and allows surrounding sounds to be
   36  heard with the other ear.
   37         (c)(3) The Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles
   38  shall adopt promulgate, by administrative rule, standards and
   39  specifications for headset equipment the use of which is
   40  permitted under this subsection section. The department shall
   41  inspect and review all such devices submitted to it and shall
   42  publish a list by name and type of approved equipment.
   43         (d)(4) A violation of this subsection section is a
   44  noncriminal traffic infraction, punishable as a nonmoving
   45  violation as provided in chapter 318.
   46         (2)(a)A person may not operate a motor vehicle while using
   47  an electronic communications device in order to write or send
   48  text-based communications, including text messages, instant
   49  messages, or electronic mail.
   50         (b)It is not a violation of this subsection to read,
   51  select, or enter a telephone number or name in an electronic
   52  communications device in order to make or receive a telephone
   53  call.
   54         (c)This subsection does not apply to a person who writes a
   55  text message on an electronic communications device in order to:
   56         1.Report illegal activity;
   57         2.Summon medical or other emergency help; or
   58         3.Prevent injury or damage to a person or property.
   59         (d)A violation of this subsection is a noncriminal traffic
   60  infraction, punishable as a moving violation as provided in
   61  chapter 318.
   62         Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2010.

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