Brown, Malagari continue to advocate for hands-free driving law
HARRISBURG, Feb. 17 – Reps. Rosemary Brown, R-Monroe/Pike, and Steve Malagari, D-Montgomery, continue to advocate and work for needed change in Pennsylvania’s driving laws, specifically in regard to cellphone usage while operating a motor vehicle.
“Every day, I witness many drivers using their cellphones irresponsibly while driving- willingly putting themselves and those around them in danger on our roadways,” said Brown. “Cellphones are now becoming the largest distraction in the car and too many innocent lives, both in Pennsylvania and nationwide, have been altered or tragically lost due to this distracted driving. I want to thank Rep. Malagari for his bipartisan support of this legislation and working with me to get this legislation to the governor’s desk this session. “
Enhanced driver responsibility legislation has been introduced by Brown and Malagari (House Bill 37) which seeks to require the use of Bluetooth technology or a docking station (hands-free) when using a cellphone while driving.
“Almost every one of Pennsylvania’s neighboring states enacted driver responsibility laws to not allow mobile device use while driving. It’s time that Pennsylvania catches up to make our roadways safer,” said Malagari. “Strengthening our penalties on distracted driving is not a partisan issue, and it would show that our Commonwealth will not tolerate such reckless behavior. Our legislation is a commonsense measure that ensures responsible drivers aren’t impacted and it has the potential to prevent countless tragedies.”
Brown has been working with Eileen Miller on this legislation for over six years. In 2010, Miller lost her son, 21-year-old Paul Miller Jr., to a devastating car crash caused by a distracted tractor trailer driver on State Route 33.
“I have been working strongly with state Representative Rosemary Brown, and we have gained tremendous support and have negotiated and compromised on this proposal over the years,” said Miller. “This is the best we can do to allow the use of cellphone technology while driving to help minimize distractions and create more responsible driving behaviors for everyone’s safety.”
During the 2019-20 legislative session, Brown’s distracted driving bill was passed by the House with bipartisan support but was not brought up by the Senate. Brown and Malagari are hopeful that the legislation will reach the governor’s desk and are asking Pennsylvania residents to contact their legislators and request they co-sponsor House Bill 37.
House Bill 37 currently sits in the House Transportation Committee awaiting consideration.
For additional information on this legislation, visit legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/billinfo/billinfo.cfm?syear=2021&sind=0&body=H&type=B&bn=0037