Texting While Driving, No Big Deal? - The UpStream

Texting While Driving, No Big Deal?

posted Sunday Jan 31, 2010 by Kyria Gianos

Texting While Driving, No Big Deal?

Texting while driving seems to be a controversial subject in the United States, and actually all over the world. We've all seen that horrific video released on YouTube with the gruesome reality of what can happen while texting, but according to a new study, banning the use of cell phones and other hand-held devices has NOT reduced the number of accidents in at least four states.

New York, California, Connecticut, and Washington D.C. all have laws restricting the use of cell phones while driving, but when compared to other states that do not have the ban, accident rates have remained the same. "The laws aren't reducing crashes," according to the president of the Highway Loss Data Institute, Adrian Lund. Even though cell phones have been known to increase the risk of an accident while operating a vehicle, the study did not agree.

The amount of accidents has not been altered since the law became enforced. Lund and other analysts are puzzled as to why the information does not match up. A theory is that drivers in the states where the ban is enforced, are now using hands-free devices, which are just risky as hand-held devices, according to a recent study. Another possibility, even though cell phones are not outlawed while driving in most states, drivers are taking the threat seriously and deciding to make their phone calls before hitting the road.

Whether or not cell-phones are actually risky enough to be banned while driving, the government believes they are a seriously threat and have passed a new law on Tuesday, placing a federal ban on texting for drivers of commercial vehicles such as buses and large trucks. If caught, this could result in a fine of up to $2,750. With more laws being passed, I recommend avoiding your cell phone in the car, or it may result in a pretty costly mistake.

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