Drivers could face penalties for interacting with pets while driving

Northwest Florida
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MARATHON, FL – SEPTEMBER 16: Motorists pet a dog inside a car in a gasoline line in Big Pine Key on September 16, 2017 in Marathon, Florida. Many places in the Keys still lack water, electricity or mobile phone service and residents are still not permitted to go further south than Islamorada. The Federal Emergency […]

Pensacola, Fla (WKRG)- Under a new proposal in the Florida Senate, drivers could face penalties for interacting with their pets while driving.

Senate Bill 76 wants to stop all forms of distracted driving including texting, putting on makeup and now interacting with pets.

According to a Pet Pro Supply Company Survey, 60 percent of dog owners have driven while distracted by their pets. 17 percent of dog owners allow their dogs to sit in their laps while they drive.

Sharon Hamilton says she thinks the proposal is ridiculous.

“I don’t think petting your dog while you’re driving is distracting,” Hamilton said. “You can still watch the road and pet your animal, you don’t have to stare at them while you’re petting them.”

One man thinks the bill would really help limit distracted driving. He has a dog himself.

“In general I think it would not be much different than having a child in the backseat who I would say is misbehaving or distracting you from driving, we do have to have less distractions while we are driving,” he said.

If the bill passes, you could be fined or have to take a distracted driving class if you are caught.

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