A new study has found that hands-free cell phone laws have been linked with reducing driver deaths.
According to a report on Forbes.com, bans on hand-held cell phones while driving prevent nearly 14,000 serious injuries and 140 driver deaths each year in the United States, lowering the overall fatality rate by 7%.
Distracted driving is one of the top causes of serious car accidents and injuries, so the new findings show how important those cell phone laws are. …Read the rest »
April is observed as Distracted Driving Awareness Month. This year, it comes just two months before California Assembly Bill 47 takes effect. This new law will make distracted driving a more serious offense. Existing law provides an exemption for using a cell phone while driving if the device is designed to be used hands-free, for example, with a Bluetooth device. However, starting July 1, if a driver receives a second violation within 36 months for using a handheld cell phone or texting while driving, they will be fined, and it will add a point to their driver’s record. …Read the rest »
Research from UC Davis is suggesting that policymakers should pay a little more attention to the issue of distracted driving in partially automated vehicles. According to a Streetsblog.com report, a study by researchers at the Plug-In Hybrid & Electric Vehicle Research Center at ITS-Davis found that people who drive Tesla vehicles that are equipped with the company’s Autopilot software tend to drive more than they did before they had the software. Not just that, but they are also more likely to drive while surfing the Internet or sleeping while at the wheel trusting the unregulated and largely untested software to handle the driving. …Read the rest »
Montgomery County in Maryland is looking into camera technology that can be used to catch distracted drivers. According to a WAMU news report, a bill that is making its way to state legislature would allow the county to deploy automated cameras to catch distracted drivers and issue tickets. If allowed by the state, the county would then have to vote to use the technology. In fact, it would become one of the first municipalities in the United States to do so. …Read the rest »
Millennials often get a bad rap when it comes to distracted driving. But, a recent Liberty Mutual Insurance survey shows that Baby Boomers don’t have the high ground on that issue either. The survey of course showed that millennials are the age group most likely to admit they have used a phone while driving, at 86%. Gen X was next at 72%. …Read the rest »
Governor Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 47 into law last week, which will penalize drivers caught texting or using a handheld cell phone by adding a point to their driving record under certain circumstances. According to a CBS13 news report, starting July 1, 2021, a point will be issued for any distracted driving conviction that occurs within 36 months of a prior conviction for the same offense. A previous version of the bill would have added a point after the first conviction. …Read the rest »
A new study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety has found that senior citizens in particular are struggling with technology that is built into the dashboards of many cars. According to a CBS news report, this type of distraction increases accident risk for seniors. These so-called infotainment systems have made it easier to find a favorite song or navigate to an unknown address. …Read the rest »
April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month and as part of their efforts, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is asking lawmakers in California to lead the way for the rest of the country and ban all phone use while driving. According to news reports, California currently allows drivers to take calls through Bluetooth or hands-free devices such as a dashboard mount. …Read the rest »
There is a new push in Sacramento to crack down on something that has become a scourge on our roadways – texting while driving. According to a KCRA news report, some legislators are insisting that now is the time to step up penalties that can help change people’s behavior in this regard. Currently, the base fine in California for texting and driving is $20 for the first offense and $50 for the second violation with potential additional penalties. …Read the rest »
Americans are using their phones in riskier ways while driving leading to more fatal and devastating car accidents. According to a USA Today news report, a study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) shows that although overall cell phone on the road is down, drivers were still observed manipulating their phones 57 percent more often in 2018 than they were in 2014. This means more people are putting themselves at a much higher risk of dying in a car crash. “Manipulating cell phones” means they are doing things like texting, browsing the Web or using it for navigation or music. …Read the rest »