Motorcyclists show support for new distracted driving legislation

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Dozens of motorcyclists are asking lawmakers to pass new distracted driving legislation.

Members of the Alliance of Bikers Aimed Toward Education, or ABATE, rallied for House Bill 853 at the Capitol.

The measure would increase penalties for distracted driving incidents that result in serious injury or death.

Supporters say they hope the bill will reduce distracted driving, which they say has become a bigger problem on the roads.

"I've been riding motorcycles for over 40 years, and, quite frankly, I think the highway is more dangerous today than it's ever been," says ABATE lobbyist Charles Umbenhauer. "That's mainly because of the social media things, people on cell phones, people texting. Unless the penalties are increased, people are just going to continue to do that. And that puts everybody at risk, not just motorcyclists."

The bill is called Daniel's Law, named for Daniel Gallatin, who was killed in 2013 when his motorcycle was struck by a woman who was texting while driving.

"We don't want my dad's legacy to be how he died," says Michelle Gallatin-Baughman, Daniel's daughter. "We want his legacy to be the number of people saved with this bill."

Representative Jaret Gibbons (D-Beaver, Butler, Lawrence Counties), is the sponsor of the bill. The legislation currently sits in the House Judiciary Committee.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.