Wasin Pummarin, 123rf Stock Photo

New Tennessee laws go into effect Friday. Consumers will be able to purchase wine in supermarkets. Public college and university professors and staff can arm themselves on campus. And drivers will be subject to strict penalties for texting on the road. 


Warning an image in the above slideshow may be graphic for certain viewers.

The Paducah Business and Professional Organization recently sponsored an event to raise awareness of the dangers of texting while driving. Captain Donald Hodgson of the Paducah Police Department made a presentation along with Hillary Coltharp, a young Paducah woman who was severely injured in an automobile accident while she was texting and driving. Kate is joined by Captain Hodgson to learn more about the campaign.

Funding is Key in Texting while Driving Enforcement

Mar 27, 2014
Alton, Wikimedia Commons

In April, a statewide campaign to crack down on texting while driving will put to work methods that Kentucky Highway Safety Director Bill Bell says produced 350 distracted driving citations in four test counties over just three months. That is more than the whole state issued in the law’s first year, 2011. These practices involve one driver and one spotter in an unmarked vehicle, watching for drivers using mobile devices.

Despite these practices’ success, Kentucky may not be able to afford it, for now, beyond one month.

Kentucky drivers will soon be assessed three "penalty points" against their licenses each time they're convicted of texting while driving.

The new penalty will be enacted through administrative regulations ordered by Gov. Steve Beshear, who announced the change in Louisville on Wednesday morning.

From NPR: Testy teenagers are nothing new. But a therapist is encouraging parents to not take it personally and hold back from lashing out in anger. The solution to fights with your never-in-by-curfew, texting-at-the-table adolescent is get to the source of their anger or embarassment, not just pile yours on top of it.

From NPR: A study has found that people trying to quit smoking were twice as successful if they received encouraging text messages while trying to quit.

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear is sending a message to drivers that texting and driving is not acceptable. Beshear will meet with AT&T Kentucky, state police and an automobile wreck survivor today at the Capitol to sign the “Don’t Text and Drive Day” proclamation. The group will also announce a campaign encouraging Kentuckians to make a pledge that they won’t text while driving. The state passed a law against texting and driving two years ago.

IL Lt. Gov. takes “no texting while driving” pledge

Sep 12, 2012
Wikimedia Commons

Illinois Lieutenant Governor Sheila Simon wants students to stop texting while driving, and to make the point, she signed an "It Can Wait" pledge Tuesday at John A. Logan Community College in Carterville. Simon was part of a ceremony to announce a statewide anti-texting while driving initiative with AT&T Illinois and the Illinois Department of Transportation. The "No Text on Board Pledge Day." initiative is set for September 19th. AT&T is asking drivers to promise never to text and drive again.

Henry County Begins Texting-tip Program at High School

Aug 20, 2012

Henry County, Tenn., school officials begin a new texting tip program this school year.  According to the Paris Post-Intelligencer, the sheriff’s office will give the Henry County High School resource officer a cell phone so students can text him with tips about crime. Henry County Sheriff Monte Belew says young people will communicate more readily in a text than they will face-to-face.  Belew says that means students can quickly alert the resource officer if someone brings a weapon or drugs to school or if they overhear someone planning to harm students or faculty.