Missouri Law Not Stopping Texting Teen Drivers

Missouri Law Not Stopping Texting Teen Drivers

Currently, the state of Missouri does not ban drivers from talking on a cell phone behind the wheel. State law only stops drivers under the age of 21 from texting. All others are free to do as they wish, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).


The law isn’t helping to bust these young drivers though. According to KTTS, very few citations have been issued under this law as it’s tough to enforce.

Our St. Louis car accident lawyers understand that only about four people in each county were cited each month for texting while driving since the law hit the books. .

In Boone County, there were fewer than 10 people punished for breaking this law. The ones who got fines were only fined $20.50. One violator was punished with a $200 fine because they slammed into a utility pole while texting behind the wheel.

The distracted driving laws here in Missouri are some of the country’s most lenient. Strongly enforced laws have been proven to reduce the risks of these kinds of accidents. While we may not have laws that prohibit these acts behind the wheel, we’re asking parents to step up and to teach their young driver right from wrong.

According to the latest statistics, texting drivers are close to 25 times more likely to get into a car accident. Scarier yet, texting might be an even greater threat for teen drivers than for older drivers, since younger drivers are less likely to stop texting when faced with a difficult driving situation.

We’re asking you to talk with your teen about these risks. Remind them that driving is a privilege that should be taken seriously. There is no text that should be worth a human life.

Make Suggestions:

-Keep your cell phone in the glove compartment — out of sight and out of mind.

-Ask a passenger to answer/compose text messages.

-Pull over and attend to your cell phone while you’re stopped in a safe location.

Car accidents continue to be the number one cause of death for teens across the country. It’s important that we do all that we can to help to reduce their risks for accidents. The sad truth is that more than 90 percent of teens admit to doing multiple tasks while driving, such as talking on the cell phone, eating, playing loud music, channel surfing, using mp3 players, and interacting with friends in the car even when they admit they find it distracting. About three quarters of teens say that they text message behind the wheel.

Make sure you’re setting a good example for your teen and keeping the cell phone out of the driver’s seat whenever you and your teen are in the same vehicle. Talk with your teen frequently about these dangers and make it a law within your household to prohibit texting behind the wheel. Your talks and your enforcement have the ability to keep your teen out of accidents, safe and alive. Talk today!


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Ryan R. Cox & Associates, LLC

Ryan R. Cox & Associates, LLC is a litigation law firm that represents individuals and families in serious personal injury and wrongful death claims throughout Missouri. We help people who have been injured in all types of accidents—including car or truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, slip and fall accidents, and much more. Whether your injury is something that can cause long-term issues like a brain injury or spinal cord injury, or it is something you’ll likely make a full recovery from, we are here to help.

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