Can Handing Out 'Txting Kills' Thumb Bands Stop People From Texting While Driving?

from the beats-bad-laws dept

We've pointed out that some recent studies have suggested that laws that ban texting-while-driving may have actually made the roads more dangerous, because it hasn't stopped people from texting, but just caused them to further hide the activity by holding the phone down low -- forcing them to take their eyes off the road more. This isn't to say that we think texting while driving is a good idea -- it's not. But just because you pass a law trying to ban a really dumb idea, it doesn't mean it will have the desired effect, and the early evidence suggests that there are serious unintended consequences with these laws.

Instead of laws, I think that a combination of education and technology could be a lot more effective, and it appears that at least some law enforcement folks are trying to increase the educational aspect. Parker Mason points us to the news that police in Iowa have started issuing "Txting Kills" thumb bands (sort of like the Livestrong bracelets... but for your thumb) rather than tickets to those caught texting while driving (they're also just handing them out at schools). It's nice to see an educational component, rather than just strict punishment, but I'm not convinced that thumb bands alone will do the trick...

Filed Under: driving, education, iowa, texting


Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  1. icon
    Gabriel Tane (profile), 3 Nov 2010 @ 5:55am

    Re: text and drive...and technology

    I like where you're going, but I think the best solution would still be for parents to raise their children with a proper sense of responsibility for their actions and to actually THINK about what they're doing.

    This isn't an issue that technology or a little thumb-bracelet is going to solve. It's going to stop when people realize that driving a car is operating a 1/2ton+ killing machine that requires full concentration. Do I get distracted while driving? Occasionally, yes. But I have the wherewithal to chastise myself and feel like an ass for letting my attention wander. Just like I how I feel that I'm the stupidest moron on the road when that yellow light doesn't last as long as I thought it would.

    But you know what? I've never had an accident because I wasn't paying attention. Only once because I assumed someone had pulled off without verifying. And I never contested my own idiocy for that action.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Techdirt Gear
Shop Now: Techdirt Logo Gear
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads

Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.