The NTSB Is Recommending Cell Phone Use Ban While Driving [Consumer]

by on December 14, 2011

in consumer

Cell PhonesThe NTSB (National Transportation Safety Board) is recommending that any and all cell phone usage while driving be banned altogether, regardless of how it’s being used.  And I can’t say I disagree with that call.  Not after reading that that someone that was text-messaging, caused an accident that killed two people and injured forty in a Missouri highway pileup.

To be honest, here’s my personal stance on the issue:

Using a cell phone, in hands-free mode, should not be an issue.

…  That’s it.  Hands-free mode.  Not text-messaging, not holding the phone or crushing it to one’s ear with their shoulder, and oh my god, especially, under no circumstance, should someone be trying to pull off the bone-head move of texting while driving.

I’m not sure who thinks they’re so entitled, but when you do crap that takes your focus off the road, you risk other people’s health and well-being.  It’s that simple.

Food for Thought:

If you look at your phone for “one second,” you’re not looking out your car window at the road for that “one second?”

  • At 25 mph, you’re moving at 37 feet per second. (FPS)
  • At 35 mph, 51 fps.
  • At 55 mph, 81 fps.
  • At 70 mph, 103 fps.

Fifty-one feet in one second is a lot of ground to cover, when you look away and let’s face it, it’s more than one second, no matter how you spin it to make it sound better to yourself.

When you combine the idea of cell phone use with how some people can’t seem to drive when they’re fully focused, well, it’s an equation for disaster.

If someone only hurt themselves while doing stupid things while behind the wheel, I would have no problem with that.  But that’s never the case.  Stupidity always involves other people suffering.

I watched a lady backing out her SUV from a shopping mall parking space the other day.

It seemed imperative that she start the SUV, dial the phone, put the SUV in reverse, crush the phone to her ear, (thus locking her head in one position instead of looking around) and then back out of her parking space.

I had to step back and out of her path to avoid being hit, and when I asked her through her window if her phone call got through, she nearly crapped her pants and got mad at me for scaring her.

Honestly… she was mad at me for startling her.

I was entertained to watch this darwinistic maneuver on her part, but only because I was expecting this and didn’t get hit by her.  If someone else had been walking by who wasn’t paying attention, who knows what could have come of this moment.

But shame on me for scaring her.  Oh what was I thinking???

{If 20+ states make it illegal to text-message while driving, why do they offer traffic updates via Twitter?}

Bottom line is that there’s a weird grey area between having to be using one’s cell phone or smart phone while operating a multi-ton item through traffic.  It doesn’t make sense to me and I think if you need to take those chances, maybe the only real deterrent would be $500-1000 fines to catch folks attentions.

I don’t know what the real answer is here.  Hands free would be optimal across the board, but I don’t see too many people caring enough to take up that cause.  For now, one just needs to tread carefully through their day.

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