Do Cell Phone and Texting Laws Reduce Distracted Driving?
There’s no argument regarding the serious nature of the distracted driving problem in the United States. However, there is some debate on how to properly curtail it. Many believe primary laws by states that ban cell phone and texting use naturally discourage and thus decrease the amount of accidents resulting from distracted driving. But a recent story in The Reno-Gazette Journal’s Fact Checker column challenged the preventative worth in these kinds of laws, alleging inadequate research by those supporting the laws. The piece was in response to Senate bill 140, which bans all handheld cell phone use in Nevada and goes into action on Saturday, October 8.
The column did not dispute the dangers of using cell phones and handheld devices while driving, noting University of Utah research that claimed drivers using cell phones were as impaired as those who were drunk with a blood alcohol content above the legal limit at 0.8 percent. It also pointed out tragic accidents in the Nevada area resulting from distracted driving. But its question lied in numerous conflicting studies concerning whether the bans decrease the occurrence of dangerous driving, as well as a recent Governors Highway Safety Association report that claimed, “there is no evidence that cell phone or texting bans have reduced crashes.”
But despite its lack of evidence regarding ban effectiveness, the column went on to say that Nevada should be considered another important part of the research pool and if data is ultimately quantifiable enough to prove positive results, “law enforcement officials and transportation employees who backed the law should be praised for getting out in front of a problem before it became more serious.”
But perhaps it’s a moot question when battling such an insidious and often lethal opponent as distracted driving, and anyone presenting solutions should be applauded for taking steps in the right direction, regardless of what the early data insinuates. If you’ve been injured in an accident that you believe was the fault of another driver being distracted, contact the Oklahoma City distracted driver car crash attorneys with Maples Law Firm at 1-888-226-6159 today.
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