Transportation Secretary Wants To Ban All Driver Talking (Except To Other Passengers)

from the yeah,-that'll-work dept

Just after new evidence has come out showing that various driving-while-texting bans have had the opposite effect, by causing people to just keep on texting, but do so by holding their phone lower so cops can't see it (but also so they are paying even less attention to the road), Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood now wants to make our roads even more dangerous by trying to ban pretty much all driver talking in a car, with the exception (so far) of talking to other passengers. He wants to ban all mobile phone talking by drivers, even if it's handsfree, and he wants to extend that to vehicle information systems like OnStar or GPS systems.

Again, we've discussed repeatedly that we agree such things can be quite dangerous, though you can argue if talking to OnStar or to someone on the phone is really that much more dangerous than talking to a passenger. However, it's becoming increasingly clear that these sorts of laws don't actually help. They don't stop people from doing these actions, and seem to only get more people doing them in even more dangerous ways. Continuing down this path, that already doesn't work, is a huge mistake, and you would think that someone in a position like LaHood would actually pay attention to the evidence that this isn't working, and wouldn't suggest making the problem worse.

Of course, if this ban does go into effect, and the reports of accidents continue to rise, how long will it be until LaHood also bans talking to passengers in your car?

Filed Under: driving distractions, hands-free, mobile phones, ray lahood


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  1. identicon
    Joseph Durnal, 12 Oct 2010 @ 8:11am

    Exemptions, etc

    Have you seen some of the exemptions written into some of the state laws that exempt just about any government official from the law? What makes a government official any less likely to be in an accident while talking on the telephone than you or I?

    Millions of people drive and do other things while driving every day without crashing. Should they ban GPS's? Car stereos? Smoking and driving? Really, what is the problem with checking your texts while you are stopped at a traffic light?

    This is a way for politicians to claim that they are doing something good, but it is just a claim. The next campaign ad will use it to say that as .... candidate ... saved millions of people from dying and cured cancer.

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