Kristin Murphy admits it: Before her daughter was killed by a distracted driver in 2010, she used to use her phone while driving, too.
On Tuesday, the Collier County mom will be one of three parents pushing Florida legislators to pass laws addressing distracted driving at the Florida Distracted Driving Summit in Tampa.
Murphy's daughter, Chelsey, was 19 and expecting her first child when she was struck by a hit-and-run driver on U.S. 41 in 2010. Investigators later arrested the driver, Jacques Dampier, 19, who was talking on his phone at the time of the wreck.
"I'm really focused, not just on Chelsey's story, but getting these legislators to understand — what if that was your child?" Murphy said. "How would you feel if the sheriff or the highway patrol knocked on your door to tell you your child was in an accident, and it was preventable?"
Since her daughter's death, Murphy has advocated for the passage of laws banning cellphone use while driving, at one point filming a PSA for the U.S. Department of Transportation. Texting and driving is banned in 39 states, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, but Murphy said Florida lawmakers have resisted passing such legislation.
"They want a study to be done," she said. But "how many more people have to die before a study is done?"
Distracted driving was a factor in about 16 percent of the country's road deaths in 2010, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Speeding was a factor in 31 percent, and drunken driving was a factor in 32 percent.
Murphy said she talks to groups like high school driver's education classes in hopes of preventing other crashes. But even older drivers should realize they're at risk, she said.
"I was always talking in my car after work," she said. "I never thought it was an issue. I say that because even though I have experience driving, I could still be the cause of an accident."
Murphy will speak Tuesday at 9 a.m. at the Tampa Convention Center as part of a three-member victim impact panel.
"I'm just pushing that message. The more people we can get involved with legislation, the more lives we can save," she said. "To bury your child is unreal. I never, ever thought I'd be burying a child."