While the Virginia Senate approving a bill increasing fines for texting while driving from $20 to $250 for first offenses and from $50 to $500 for following infractions is a good first step in curbing texting while driving, more action must be taken to resolve the problem.
The increased fines are a good step forward, but the DMV point system should be amended to add points to violators’ licenses. The first offense should be a minimum point penalty, while recurring offenses should elicit a harsher response, similar to that of reckless driving offenses.
In addition, Virginia officials should implement policies to subdue texting-while-driving habits. The driver education program should emphasize the danger of texting while driving, such as a new curriculum or training course experiences that allow students to recognize how drastically texting affects driving.
Texting while driving remains a major problem in traffic safety, but while the new bill is as step in the right direction, more is needed to preempt the dangers of texting while driving.