After a crash and ‘epiphany,’ Ky. rep votes yes

Keith Hall of KentuckyLast week, State Rep. Keith Hall of Kentucky turned thumbs down on a plan to ban text messaging while driving. He voted against HB 43 in the House Transportation Committee.

The measure succeeded, though, and went before the full House on Feb. 4. This time, Hall voted yes with the zeal of a recent convert.

“I’ve had a change of heart,” he told the House.

That’s because the night before the vote, his wife reportedly reached for her ringing cell phone and plowed into another vehicle.

“I heard the sirens go off, and my cell phone rang and they said, ‘Your wife has just had a serious traffic accident,’ he told fellow legislators during debate.

“That’ll give you an epiphany,” he said. “That’ll give you a wake-up call.”

Kentucky’s distracted driving bill HB 43, which also prevents teens from using cell phones while driving, cleared the chamber in an 80-16 vote.

People frustrated with legislative resistance to cell phone and texting legislation sometimes wonder if distracted driving has to affect lawmakers personally before they’ll vote yes.

Sometimes, yes.


  1. sharon hardy says:

    I watched your show oprah about no phone zone and having done this myself and knowing my children and grandchildren also do this I was moved to pledge to stop immediately. then I left a message for kids and grandchildren to stop this practice.

    Yesterday my daughter called me and I ask her if she was driving as we spoke. She said ‘yes’ and I told her that was a violation of my no phone zone in cars and if I was talking to her as she drove then I wanted her to call me later. So we stopped talking right then.

    Thank you for bringing this very dangerous practice to our attention in a strong way by showing the faces of those killed by this practice. Please continue this program until all states realize we need protection from those who do this as they drive and texting is the most dangerous which is being done by teens who have low experience on the road to start with. thank you

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