Drivers in Pennsylvania who are found guilty of causing a fatal auto accident due to texting while driving will face strict penalties after a new law was signed into legislation by Gov. Tom Wolf.
The legislation, called Daniel’s Law, took effect immediately and offers judges opportunities to bolster a sentence for up to five years in prison if a driver is texting at the time of a fatal accident. If the accident causes serious injuries, drivers could be sentenced to two years in prison.
More than 14,800 car accidents took place in Pennsylvania last year that were caused by texting drivers and amassed 66 fatalities. This figure is significant and troubling for safety and government officials, along with citizens who have lost loved ones due to other drivers’ negligence.
Daniel’s Law is dedicated to a firefighter who was killed while riding his motorcycle in May 2013 by a driver who was texting behind the wheel. The driver who caused the fatal accident only paid a $200 fine and spent 60 days in jail.
Family and friends of the deceased firefighter campaigned to pass stricter legislation so future lives could be saved. They were successful and Gov. Wolf officially signed the new law at the Scott Township fire station.
Gov. Wolf hopes that states will follow in passing similar legislation that provides safer roads for citizens across the nation. He stated that texting and driving has been compared to impaired driving for a long time and this dangerous driving behavior has been under-punished.
If you or your loved one was injured by a negligent driver who was texting at the time of the accident, contact the car accident attorneys at Schmidt Kramer. In addition to reviewing your claim for free, we will help determine what type of compensation you could be entitled.