According to a recent article in the Insurance Journal, the Advocates for Highway & Auto Safety has released a new report ranking the states based on how many of them have passed 16 key safety laws that they have identified. The state of Missouri has landed near the bottom of their list, as the third worst state in terms of having driver safety laws on the books.
Missouri currently has only four of the 16 recommended safety laws in place. South Dakota was last on the list, with only two such laws in place, and Rhode Island topped the list with 12 laws in place.
Missouri does not currently have laws addressing some of the following driver safety concerns, including primary seat belt enforcement, laws on child car seats, open container laws, and a complete ban on texting while driving. These are the main areas that earned the state a low score in the recent report.
The report also estimated Missouri’s annual economic losses from motor vehicle crashes to be over $5.5 billion. State transportation officials again reported over 900 fatal motor vehicle crashes in 2018.
Despite prior failed attempts to the legislation, state lawmakers recently have introduced bills for this legislative session prohibiting usage of hand-held wireless devices by all drivers and banning cell phone use in school zones. Missouri’s current law only bans texting for drivers who are under the age of 21 and drivers of commercial motor vehicles. It remains one of a very few states that have not passed a full ban on texting and driving. Some municipalities in Missouri, however, have enacted city ordinances that ban texting while driving for all age groups. At Benjamin Law Firm, LLC, we pride ourselves on helping our clients with personal injury claims resulting from all types of accidents, as well as with their legal difficulties related to traffic violations, DWI, general criminal offenses, and expungement of criminal records. Call our office today at (816) 322-8008 and learn what we can do to help.