Driven to Distraction

This is Distracted Driving Month. I don’t think we mean to celebrate distraction; but rather generate awareness that it exists. 11% of all drivers during daylight hours are distracted. That’s a quote from the report.

The League of American Bicyclists credit this Pulitzer Prize winning series of stories on Distracted Driving by Matt Richtel with being out ahead of the story and keeping it in the headlines so action might be taken.

Cyclists can learn to control most of the risks and hazards of riding a 20lb vehicle among the two ton vehicles, but a distracted driver just cannot be managed. This is scary stuff. And what’s worse. We all have those little cell phones. It is very hard not to answer one when it rings. Asking legislators to ban the use of cell phones by drivers is asking them to penalize themselves. It;s going to be tough to get national acceptance of such laws.–Corrie

Driven to Distraction

With virtually every American owning a cellphone, distracted driving has become a threat on the nation’s roads. Studies say that drivers using phones are four times as likely to cause a crash as other drivers. Yet Americans have largely ignored that research. Device makers and auto companies acknowledge the risks, but they aggressively develop and market gadgets that cause distractions. Police in almost half of all states make no attempt to gather data on the problem. The federal government warns against talking on a cellphone while driving, but no state legislature has banned it.

Through articles, videos and interactive features, The Times has examined the risks of talking and texting behind the wheel. The series also explores the extent of the problem, its origins, and the pressures people feel to stay connected while driving. And the series shows the political, regulatory and scientific dimensions of an issue that has prompted conversations and action across the country, from the Oval Office and statehouses to corporate boardrooms and kitchen tables.

Read the Articles

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