• Hands-Free Landslide Vote in MA

    By Marie McGrath | Posted Thursday, May 16th, 2019

Massachusetts House of Representatives votes to pass the life-saving bill 155-2.

MA Senate Hearing Scheduled for June 6, 2019

On Wednesday evening, the Massachusetts House voted overwhelmingly to pass bill H 3793, An Act Requiring the Hands-Free Use of Mobile Telephones While Driving.

The bill prohibits the use of mobile electronic devices by drivers unless the device is being used in hands-free mode. A single touch or swipe is allowed to activate hands-free mode, but nothing more. Drivers in violation will face up to a $500 fine. This legislation will take effect 90 days after it is signed into law.

The families of three individuals who lost their lives due to distracted driving were in the House chamber during this historic moment . Among those was Rich Levitan, President and CEO of TextLess Live More and father of Merritt Levitan, who was struck and killed by a distracted driver when she was 18 years old.

Speaker Bob DeLeo, Rich Levitan, and Representative Joseph Wagner in the Massachusetts House Chambers

“Massachusetts is one step closer to being hands free with this almost unanimous vote to pass a strong piece of legislation to end distracted driving,” said Levitan after the vote. “Our collaborative effort with other like-minded organizations, including Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD), Safe Roads Alliance, , TrueMotion, Vision Zero, and AAA Northeast contributed to a historic day yesterday on Beacon Hill.”

“I’m trying to hold it together, it’s super emotional,” Levitan continued. “We’re passionate about [this bill] for obvious reasons. It’s what Merritt would be doing if she had the opportunity to do it herself.”

The State Senate will bring its own hands-free bill to the floor in early June.