The basic definition for distracted driving is a driver operating a handheld device and/or doing other actions that take away their focus while handling their automobiles. Although there have been some forms of distracted driving since automobiles first came out, for instance, reading maps, talking to passengers or eating, but the use of cell phones while driving has hit epidemic levels.
The National Security Council estimates that 1 in 4 car crashes now involve some form of cell phone use. No matter if a person is in a cage or on a motorcycle, this ratio is extremely alarming. Below are some more quick facts from the DOT Distracted Driving website:
-4.6 seconds is the time that a driver is not looking at the road when texting or reading a text. In that period of time if the vehicle is going 55mph, the vehicle travels the length of a football field.
-A person is 23 times more likely to get into a crash when they are engaged in distracted driving like using a cell phone.
-Drivers using handheld devices are 4 times more likely to get into a crash that causes injuries.
-At any point in time, over 650,000 drivers are using cell phones or manipulating electronic devices while driving.
Yes, the number of cell phone related laws is growing, but from casual observation, they are regularly disregarded. With more mobile devices now than ever and the Westernized World expecting instant information twenty-four hours a day, there are alternatives to make staying connected safer.
One of many ways to reduce distracted driving is to increase penalties. Another popularly held solution is the implementation of hands-free laws, but do they really work? Surprisingly, the answer is probably not and this will be discussed in the next article.