From today (October 1), drivers in school zones, school crossings and active work zones in Florida, United States, are prohibited from using electronic devices at the wheel, unless they are in hands-free mode.

The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV), in conjunction with the Florida Department of Transportation, Florida Department of Education, Florida Sheriff’s Association, Florida Police Chiefs Association and AAA – The Auto Club Group, is leading Florida’s Put It Down: Focus on Driving campaign to ensure all motorists are aware of the state’s new regulations regarding wireless communications while driving.

“The hands-free aspect of the law makes school zones, school crossings and active work zones safer across our state and gives law enforcement a strong tool to educate drivers,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “Using a wireless device while driving is extremely dangerous, and all drivers should be focused on the road.”

Drivers using a wireless communications device in a school crossing, school zone or active work zone will be issued warnings through December 31, 2019. Starting January 1, 2020, drivers will be cited for using any wireless communication devices in a handheld manner in these designated areas.

The Wireless Communications While Driving Law became effective July 1, 2019. From July 1 through September 24, 2019, there were 463 warnings issued by Florida Highway Patrol for texting and driving. From July 1 through September 22, 2019, there were 605 citations issued statewide by all law enforcement agencies for texting and driving.