Utah Senate approves bill to allow anonymous reporting of ‘bad drivers’

| 2/6/2008

A bill in Utah that would allow people to call in anonymous tips about dangerous drivers is halfway through the state’s Legislature. It is intended to help people report relatives who might not be able to drive safely.

Utah law now requires that drivers be given the name of who reported them to officials. The Senate voted 20-9 Friday, Feb. 1, in favor of the bill that would allow anonymity to those reporting drivers whose impairments could pose imminent threats to their own and others’ safety. The bill’s next stop is the House.

Sponsored by Sen. Allen Christensen, R-North Ogden, the rule would apply to anyone, regardless of age. However, Christensen said the focus is on older drivers.

Christensen offered a similar version during the 2007 session, but the full Senate rejected the bill because of concerns about people anonymously tattling on someone. Others said older people shouldn’t be singled out as the problem.

To prevent harassing people, the bill includes a provision that would make reporting false concerns punishable up to 90 days in jail and/or up to a $750 fine.

The bill – SB34 – is in the House Rules Committee.

To view other legislative activities of interest for Utah in 2008, click here.