Missouri is one of the last three states in the nation that does not have a ban on texting for all drivers. However, the state senate has a new proposal to consider that would require all drivers, regardless of age, to stop using their phones while they’re behind the wheel. The only exception to the proposed law would be hands-free devices.

The rationale behind the proposal is clear: reduce the numbers of motor vehicle accidents, injuries and fatalities on Missouri roads.

A recent news article quoted a police officer west of St. Louis who said though drunk driving remains a serious road safety problems, it’s a problem that is in slow decline. Distracted driving is a road safety problem that continues to worse, he said.

The St. Joseph Police Department sergeant said distracted drivers “are every bit as dangerous, if not more dangerous than a drunk driver, because the drunk driver, while they may might not comprehend everything that is going on around them, at least their eyes are focused on the road.” He noted as well that when a driver is focused on their phone, their eyes are wholly diverted from the traffic.

Missouri’s current laws prohibits drivers under 21 years old from using their phones. But distracted drivers come in all ages, the police officer said. “Seventy percent of our accidents, I believe last year, where texting and driving was a problem actually involved people over the age of 22,” he added.

If you or a loved one has been hurt by a distracted driver, contact a St. Louis law firm dedicated to getting full compensation and justice in personal injury litigation.