A coalition of safety, health, and consumer organizations says Missouri is a good distance away from being one of the top states for highway safety laws. Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, an insurance industry-financed lobbying group in Washington, says Missouri could be at the top if it passes eight laws.
Missouri gets credit for requiring all motorcyclists to wear helmets—Governor Nixon vetoed a repeal last year; for limits on using cell phones by younger drivers although Advocates says the law needs to ban text-messaging by everybody. It likes the graduated drivers license in Missouri but says it doesn’t measure up to the standards it has set.
The group wants primary enforcement of seat belt laws, four changes in the graduated drivers license law, an ignition interlock system for first-offense DWI convictions, and an open container law.
Organization president Judy Stone knows the legislature has rejected some of these issues. “You just have to keep trying,” she says.
Advocates use federal figures to put the economic loss from Missouri motor vehicle crashes at more than 4.7-billion dollars.
The organization says states need to have 15 highway safety laws…Missouri is credited with eight-and-a-half. The half is because the organization says the cell phone ban is only half done without a texting ban, too.
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