Texting while driving will soon be against the law in Arizona after Gov. Doug Ducey signed legislation banning the use of handheld mobile devices throughout the state.
“Too many lives have been lost because of texting and driving,” said Governor Ducey. “Too many families have needlessly grieved the loss of a loved one due to a preventable tragedy. I called on legislators to provide a solution that will save lives — and I am grateful for their efforts to do just that. This legislation takes important, clear and common sense steps to prevent texting and driving. I thank everyone who worked to get this legislation across the finish line and especially the Townsend family for their courage and advocacy.”
In January of 2019, Salt River Police Officer Clayton Townsend died in the line of duty after being struck by a vehicle driven by a distracted driver. Following Officer Townsend's passing, the Townsend family joined many other families in becoming strong advocates for a ban on texting while driving.
“Distracted driving has to stop,” said Toni Townsend, mother of fallen Officer Townsend. “Although we feel the pain everyday of losing Clayton, we hope that this much-needed reform can save the lives of countless others moving forward. I want to express my gratitude to Governor Ducey and to members of the Arizona Legislature for putting this ban on texting while driving on the books.”
States implementing hands-free laws have experienced 16 percent reductions in fatalities within the first two years. Studies also show that texting while driving increases the likelihood of a crash or near-crash by 23 times.