Monday, January 12, 2009

Nationwide Cell Phone Ban While Driving?

Now, everyone knows that using a cell phone while driving is distracting. Even six states ban the use of cell phones while driving and seven states ban texting while driving. On Sunday, the National Safety Council called for a nationwide ban of using mobile phones while driving (Reuters)
"It's time to take the cellphone away," said Janet Froetscher, president and chief executive officer of the non-profit group. "Studies show that driving while talking on a cellphone is extremely dangerous and puts drivers at a four times greater risk of a crash," Froetscher said in a telephone interview.
You may have heard of the use of a "hands-free" device while using a cell phone and driving. The states above do NOT ban the use of a hands-free device. However, the National Safety Council is recommending all use of cellular phones while driving - including the use of hands-free devices and texting.

Personally, I think this is a little extreme. I admit that I see people all the time kind of paying attention to the road while talking on the phone, or tuning their radio/mp3 player, or shaving, or putting on make up, or eating while driving, or talking to passengers in the car. Banning texting and encouraging use of hands-free devices make sense to me. But banning all use of cell phones while driving. I think that takes it a little too far. What do you think?


Mary said...

I saw a girl on the road the other day talking on her cell phone AND doing her hair up in a bun at the same time! I don't know how she managed to steer with all that going on, but I'll admit, I laughed. I wasn't shocked and appauled. I was amused. First at the notion that she thought she could actually do a bun with one hand free, and second at the sight of her trying to do it! So funny. She should've taken care of that mess at a stoplight.

OHN said...

Before you know it the traffic cams will be making us keep our hands at 10 and 2.

Personally I think a hands free device is fine. It really isn't any different than chatting with your passenger.

Ironically I have threatened my kids for using their phones when driving....then one busted me for calling him while he was driving...that led to me telling him he shouldn't have answered....hey a Mom is always right. Right?

We have had 2 teens killed (in separate accidents) in our area in the last year . There was undeniable evidence they were texting while driving. Such a sad and unnecessary loss for those families.

Anonymous said...

Next they're going to want to ban talking to passengers in the car, singing along with the radio, fiddling with the temperature controls, scratching an itch, and anything else deemed a "driver distraction." It's too much!

Anonymous said...

I would agree that maybe it was too extreme a measure. But the issue has been needing addressed for quite some time now.
Safety is being compromised all too often.

Anonymous said...

I think there's a study out there that shows it's not that you're using your hands to hold the cell phone while driving that impedes your ability to react to potentially dangerous traffic situations, but that your attention is diverted away from the road. Using a hands free to talk to someone while driving with both hands on the wheel still means that attention that should be on the road is diverted to your cell phone conversation.

However, they found that when passengers are in the car and talking to the driver, the danger of an accident is not as high as when you're on a cell phone conversation, probably because your passenger knows when to be quiet in a tense traffic situation.

Muddy said...

After driving around someone who isnt paying attention because they are on the phone, my response would probably be-YES! But...inside I know I really hate to see when things like this get legislated...things where if people just used their common sense (not texting while driving-not fiddling with cell phone) we would not need the law in the first place.

Ajlouny said...

In the moments before a crash or near crash, drivers typically spend nearly five seconds looking at their mobil devices — enough time at typical highway speeds to cover more than the length of a football field. Now that's pretty dangerous.