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Volusia County passes beach texting ban for drivers

Beach drivers must keep lights on, windows down

DeLAND, Fla. – The Volusia County Council voted Thursday to ban texting while driving on county beaches.

The council gave preliminary approval to a number of changes in early March, including the texting ban. 

Council members also approved rules requiring drivers to keep their windows down and headlights on while on the beach.  The earliest the rules can go into effect is 10 days, but officials said they are asking people to start following the rules immediately.

Meanwhile, rules including the creation of several one-way driving zones and some no parking areas begin on Friday.

Three stretches of beach will be south-driving only. Two in Daytona Beach are from  International Speedway Boulevard to Silver Beach Avenue and University to Seabreeze boulevards. The third is in Ormond Beach, located at Granada Boulevard to Cardinal Drive.

No parking zones include in front of Sun Splash Park in Daytona Beach, Frank Rendon Park in Daytona Beach Shores and Flagler Avenue Park in New Smyrna Beach.

The rules come in response to recent driving accidents at Daytona Beach.  Two children died after being hit by cars in 2010.
Beach Patrol Capt. Tammie Marris says she expects the changing traffic patterns and new rules to make for a busy Easter weekend. She says the patrol will have extra people on hand to help.

Volusia County residents said the ban and new rules are a relief.

"Kids are always running around and they don't look for cars," said mother Sinya Wilson. "There's always something happening here, I was scared to come to the beach."