Massachusetts S7 – Relative to improving safety on the roads of the Commonwealth
Relative to improving safety on the roads of the CommonwealthFull Bill Text
Bill S7 was introduced to both chambers of the Massachusetts Legislature on January 24, 2019 by Gov. Charles Baker. The House concurred on January 28th and the bill subsequently has been referred to the Joint Transportation Committee where it has not yet been assigned a hearing date.
The governor’s bill has a number of moving parts to it, most of which the NMA opposes. For example, S7 would:
- Introduce a ban on the handheld use of electronic devices while driving;
- Change the Commonwealth’s seat belt law from secondary to primary enforcment;
- Would require first-time DUI offenders who apply for hardship to use ignition interlock devices, a penalty currently reserved for repeat offenders.
The NMA supports the distracted driving laws that all states have in their statutes but opposes new laws that single out specific behaviors that may or may not cause distractions for certain individuals. If the former, existing laws suffice. In addition, insurance industry studies have shown that handheld bans, let alone texting bans, are ineffective.