Has the Hands-Free Georgia Act stopped car accidents?

On Behalf of | Jul 22, 2023 | Car Accidents |

The Hands-Free Georgia Act went into effect in 2018. It was an amendment to the law already in place concerning texting and driving.

This act sought to strengthen the law about distracted driving by making it illegal for drivers to hold or touch a cell phone or other device while driving. It also restricted using hands-free technology, stating drivers could not create text messages or other content while driving. The impact of this law is mixed.

Reducing distracted driving

There is no real information available to prove that the act reduced distracted driving. So, it is not possible to say it was successful in this mission.

Reducing fatal accidents

The law may have had an impact in stopping deadly crimes. Since its enaction, the number of fatal crashes in the state has decreased. There have been far fewer deadly accidents due to distracted driving.

Before the act, in 2017, the fatal auto accident count related to distracted driving was 82. After the act, in 2019, that decreased to 43. In 2020, though, the number increased to 56, but that was still below pre-act numbers.

Looking at the impact of the act, it seems to have made some difference. Other types of fatal crashes, such as those caused by drunk driving or speeding, actually increased in 2020, while the distracted driving-related incidents decreased. So, it is easy to argue the new law helped because it is making drivers more aware and less likely to blatantly use technology when behind the wheel.


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