• Hands-free law went into effect almost a year ago. How much impact is it having?

    By: Steve Gehlbach

    Updated:

    Next weekend officially kicks off the summer driving season and it has been almost a year since Georgia's hands-free law went into effect.

    Is it having an impact on drivers? You may see the number of deaths on Georgia roads displayed on the electronic signs statewide. So far, the numbers are down this year.

    The Georgia Department of Transportation hopes to continue that trend and says now is a good time to remind everyone: Stay alert. Stay off your phones. 

    “They are lower right now so we need people to really commit to keeping those numbers low this year,” says GDOT’s Natalie Dale.

    The preliminary numbers seem to show the state’s roads are safer so far this year. But even with tougher enforcement, drivers may still not be getting the message.

    “You still see people holding them like this, all the time still,” Dale said.


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    But one shocking stat for GDOT: This year, 60 percent of victims were not wearing seatbelts.

    While the trend looks promising, a reminder to all drivers the number of fatalities can easily rise again.

    “You’ll start to see the spikes in the summer, they’ll go down a little bit, then they spike back at the end of the year,” Dale said.

    With the Memorial Day holiday, May is usually one of the most dangerous months. But last year, July had the most deaths, the second highest in December.

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