Great Hang Up: Sheriff shoots anti-texting video

3:33 PM, Sep 23, 2011   |    comments
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Bradenton, Florida -- Here in Florida, we're in the minority.  This is one of only a few states with no law against texting and driving.  But even without a law, some law enforcement officials are taking a stand.

Manatee County Sheriff Brad Steube recently shot an anti-texting public service announcement with students from Manatee High School.  In the video, a quarterback is on the field and just as he calls a play, he grabs his phone to read a text.  He is immediately sacked.  

In the video, Sheriff Steube says, "You wouldn't text while playing football," then adds: "So why in the world do you think you can text while driving."

Sheriff Steube told 10 News he wasn't always sure if supported anti-texting legislation.  That changed after a recent incident.

"I'm driving down the road one day," says Steube, "and I actually see this girl in front of me texting.  It was obvious because her hands were p on the steering wheel and she was just going at it."

Traffic was stopped ahead of the girl, but she didn't see it.

"She had to slam on her brakes, swerve to the left and then almost hit the people in the traffic stop."

Manatee High quarterback Cord Sandberg appears in the PSA. He doesn't have his license yet, but does have a learner's permit.   He thinks a video like this one could be the perfect lesson for other kids his age.

"I think it may be a little bit easier to relate to," said Sandberg. "It's kind of a funny little skit, but it's serious and hopefully it'll grab the attention of kids in high school and teenagers."

The PSA will likely run during college and professional football games on Bright House Cable.

The Manatee Sheriff's Office also holds Teen Driver Challenge classes every few months.  They serve as a supplement to regular drivers ed classes.  September's classes are filled, but more are planned for the months ahead.  Click here to learn more about the program and apply for upcoming classes.

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