New bill aimed at distracted driving, in memory of former Owasso teacher killed in May

Posted at 9:54 PM, Jan 19, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-19 23:34:08-05

OWASSO -- Holding a phone in your hand while driving could soon mean a hefty fine. It's a proposed bill by Senator J.J. Dossett. It's in memory of former Owasso teacher killed by a distracted driver in May.

White and blue "Drop It & Drive" in various school zones across the state. They're to warn students and teachers about the dangers of distracted driving. It's in memory of Bobbi White. 

"The hashtag for my daughter is a trail to the senate floor," Bobbi's mother Gail Lambert said. "That's where we're going to go."

This was her plea in October. Now, Lambert is getting her wish.

"I don't want to be angry, I don't," she said. "But my daughter is gone, so it's rough."

Lambert says her daughter was killed by a distracted driver last May in a construction zone. Senator J.J. Dossett, also a former Owasso teacher, says Bobbi was an influence among young adults.

"Kids really liked her and that's why the tragedy hit home and something needs to be done," he said.

Senator Dossett is doing something about it. He filed "The Bobbi White Act."

"If you get pulled over for texting and driving, you could just say I'm not texting," Senator Dossett said. "You have your privacy rights and people can't look through your phone without your permission. So we need to be able to say that you can't have something in your hand and be looking at it while your vehicle is in motion."

The bill targets school zones and construction areas. But Senator Dossett says distracted driving happens everywhere.

"The turnpike is bad," he said. "There's people just sitting back on cruise control. I mean those vehicles aren't driving themselves."

Senator Dossett says he needs 51 people in the House, 25 in Senate and the governor's signature to put this into effect. It's a bill for safety and for Bobbi.