Des Moines, Iowa — Backers of a bill that would require drivers to keep their hands off of their smartphones are hoping this is the year the bill becomes law.
Iowa State Patrol Captain Todd Bailey says one out of five traffic deaths in the past five years can be linked to a distracted driver.
A senate subcommittee has advanced a bill that would require any smart phone use inside a vehicle to be in hands-free or voice activated mode. It’s currently illegal to text while driving in Iowa, but there’s no ban on downloading music, watching videos or playing games.
Senator Mark Lofgren of Muscatine says as a runner, he’s dealt with distracted drivers for years.
Larry Loss of Clive told lawmakers he was critically injured while bicycling last May.
According to an insurance industry lobbyists, states that ban motorists from using electronic devices while driving have experienced a 15 percent reduction in traffic fatalities.