Prattville residents speak out about texting and driving ordinance

Posted by: Melissa McKinney - bio | email

PRATTVILLE, AL (WSFA) - Most folks in Prattville will tell you, texting and driving can be deadly.

"A lot of people's lives are at stake," says one resident.

"People going around corners and that kinda stuff. I've seen close calls many times," says Paul Thornton.

That's why Prattville city council President Dean Argo introduced an ordinance to make it illegal.

"To bring awareness to the fact that that should be prohibited," he said during a public hearing Thursday night.

But not everyone agrees a law will curb this growing trend.

Lora Lee Boone was one of the two people who spoke at the city's public hearing.

"I think you're really naïve to believe that a law that does not enforce morality that just enforces legislation is going to affect the citizens of Prattville and cause them to stop texting while driving," she says.

Argo says enforcement will be a challenge for police. But he adds the ordinance is more of a mechanism, prompting people to think twice before they text while driving.

"I don't think that just a sign that says no texting is going to do any good. Unless there is some fine or prison term attached, then people are just going to choose to ignore that," says Argo.

The council votes on the ordinance Tuesday. While some believe it could be just another law on the books, others say it could be the difference between life and death.

"If it'll save one life then it's well worth the ordinance," says Thornton.

If approved a driver would pay $50 dollars for the first offense and could face up to 10 days in jail.

After that the fines increase to $100 and $500 dollars with stiffer jail times.

Several council members say they expect the ordinance will pass.

The City of Montgomery is also considering a texting and driving ordinance. The earliest they could vote on it is June 4th.

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