Here's how officers will enforce Florida's new texting and driving law

Trooper Steve answers traffic questions

Trooper Steve discusses Florida's new texting and driving law.

ORLANDO, Fla. – News 6 traffic safety expert Trooper Steve Montiero answers questions about the rules of the road every week, helping Orlando-area residents become better drivers by being better educated.

Starting Monday, texting and driving became a primary offense in Florida, leaving many drivers wondering what they can and can't do on their phones.

On the flip side, how will officers enforce the new law? Trooper Steve has the answer.

"I’ve been asked this a lot, and my answer is the same just as it is with every other law: very carefully," Trooper Steve said. "Law enforcement has been attempting to enforce the epidemic of texting and driving since 2013, so when it comes to spotting this stuff and knowing what to look for, it kind of comes naturally to us. Now, however, we can stop you solely for texting without having another reason."

Trooper Steve explained exactly what behavior would spark the interest of an officer.

[ASK TROOPER STEVE: Submit your traffic questions here]

"We are looking for that driver who is buried in their phone," he said. "Whether it be that a driver is zoned in on a social media platform or scheduling last-minute meetings via email. From an outsider, finding this stuff would appear to be difficult, but from someone who enforces this stuff every day, it's like walking the dog."

[READ: What Florida drivers can and can't do on thier phones]

Trooper Steve said observing texting while driving has become pretty obvious.

"Think about this for one moment," he said. "When you're out casually driving around and you're able to see it in plain view, think about how it easy it is for a law enforcement officer, who is proactively looking for it." 

Some agencies will offer a grace period for drivers, but many will issue tickets starting Monday.

If you have a traffic question for Trooper Steve, submit it here.

About the Authors:

Daniel started with WKMG-TV in 2000 and became the digital content manager in 2009. When he's not working on, Daniel likes to head to the beach or find a sporting event nearby.

Steven Montiero, better known as “Trooper Steve," joined the News 6 morning team as its Traffic Safety Expert in October 2017. A Central Florida native and decorated combat veteran, Montiero comes to the station following an eight-year assignment with the Florida Highway Patrol.