"It was just common sense," said WV Senate President Infurlyph Ubetcheras (DEMOCRAT), "which is why we missed it the first time. And, you know, our hands are tied until we check the popularity polls. If it looks like we're screwing ourselves, we can't... uh... What I mean to say is, often we are so 'Big Picture' focused, we can often miss where the little face-recognition thingy is pointing. And you can quote me on that!"
Another senator from some obscure county in or around the northern panhandle was more helpful, "I never liked the texting and driving law as it was written. It's nearly impossible to enforce. If you can still eat, drink and drive, but can't text -- how is that helping anyone? I think we need to crack down on women who fard in their cars. Putting on makeup using the rear-view mirror as a cosmetic mirror has caused tons more accidents than texting. And I'm not just talking about auto accidents... Those women look like crap when they get to the office. I've said for years... there ought to be a law against it."
Accident and insurance companies agree a ban on eating and drinking while driving will do much more to prevent accidents and law enforcement experts say the law is easier to enforce.
State Trooper, Stan Down said, "I don't know why they didn't tackle this in the first place. Phones are so small now, it's hard to tell if someone is texting or just glancing at a blister on their hand. But I can't count how many I see driving to work in the morning with a coffee in one hand, a breakfast biscuit in the other, and driving with their knees.
"All I can do is smile and wave. That makes for quite a sight when they try to wave back!"
As the law currently reads, texting while driving is a stand-alone (or primary) offense for which a driver may be pulled over and issued a ticket in the absence of other violations. Talking on your cell phone is only a secondary offence which means the officer will have to make up a reason to pull you over instead of just for talking your cell phone.
The new law will make eating a burger, biscuit, or slice of pizza a primary offence*, and drinking coffee or a soda (without a straw)* a secondary offence. First time fines will be $100 and increase by $100 for each offence, The law will go into effect November 25th.
* Eating sides such as French Fries, Hash Brown Patties, Cheese Sticks, etc. are considered a grey area. In practice, you can avoid a ticket if you share with the officer.
** Straws are considered the culinary equivalent to a blue-tooth device for a cell phone.