Heads up! That’s the mandate from Georgia’s new Hands-Free Law, prohibiting handheld or body-supported use of mobile devices while behind the wheel. The law became effective July 1 and aims to make the roads safer for all drivers – including Atlanta Public School students who have traded their bus passes for car keys.
On August 8, Atlanta City Councilmember Andre Dickens distributed hands-free cell phone mounts to Benjamin E. Mays High School students upon their arrival to the student parking lot, and he also spoke to senior homerooms about the importance of attentive driving.
“I want you all to be compliant with all of the laws and be safe when you are driving,” said Dickens, a 1992 Mays alumnus. “As Mays High School graduates, you will go on to do great things in life. We want to make sure you fulfill the bright futures you have in front of you.”
Distracted driving is especially concerning for teens and young adults. Teens 15-19 have the largest proportion of drivers involved in fatal crashes, and 10 percent of teen drivers involved in fatal crashes were reported as distracted at the time of the crash, according to headsupgeorgia.com.
Dickens safety initiative provided 150 mounts to nine APS high schools (Carver, Douglass, Grady, Jackson, Mays, North Atlanta, South Atlanta, Therrell and Washington).
Dickens is chair of the Transportation Committee and also serves on the Public Safety & Legal Administration Committee. A fifth generation Atlanta native and proud product of the Atlanta Public School System, he was elected citywide to the Atlanta City Council Post 3 at Large in November 2013 and was the only councilmember who was re-elected unopposed in November 2017.
For more information on the Hands-Up Law, go to www.headsupgeorgia.com/handsfree-law.