Mobile device usage should be banned while driving a vehicleEvan Selleck - Contributing Editor
3,000. That's the number of accidents that is believed to have been caused by using a cell phone while driving last year. That's a shockingly high number, and it only gets worse when we look at the root cause. We love our phones, but obviously there need to be some limits set in stone.
That's where a news piece that started making the rounds yesterday comes into play. This isn't the first time that we have heard people in higher places want to ban cell phones while you're driving, and it certainly won't be the last.
And I think they're right.
For those of us who use our phone to do just about everything, and take it everywhere, using it while we're in the car doesn't seem like a big deal. Even if we're driving, answering a text message or taking a call is sometimes second nature.
But it isn't a secret that when you do any of those things while you're driving, your attention isn't on driving anymore. It's on whatever you're typing, and whatever the subject is you're talking about. Your mind is all over the place all the time, but when you're focusing it on something else while you're driving, the chances of getting into an accident grow exponentially.
I'd be lying if I said I don't do it from time to time, but I try to make sure that I'm not actually driving when I do. I'm at a stop light. A stop sign. A parking lot or the drive-thru of my favorite fast food joint.
I try to make sure that I'm not risking my life, my daughters' lives, or anyone else's on the road. And I never text, or answer calls while I'm driving at night.
So how do we stop it? If you live in a State or city that has already banned cell phone use while driving, you know people are trying to stop it on the legal side. But people still do it. So maybe it's time for the manufacturers to step in.
I know the idea of having our phone creators put in things to regulate our phones isn't the best news, but I think it is essential for something like this. Just the ability to deactivate the phone while you're in a vehicle that's moving. The issue would be differentiating between driver and passenger, obviously, but I think something like this should be created.
Basically, doing it at the legal level is one way, but it is obviously not enough.
Making hands-free technology in our cars mandatory is one option, I would hope. It means we're not actually on our phone, which is the root of the problem. Is it an absolute fix? No, but it would be a step in the right direction.
Honestly, this is a serious issue that should have some of the smartest minds out there trying to solve it. We should not be able to text an drive, or check our emails and drive.
Hopefully something can come from this.