Up to $250 fine for talking or texting on a hand held cell phone (effective January 1, 2012).
In the United States:
Over 800,000 drivers are on cell phones at any given moment. The result, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), is more than 6,000 distracted driving deaths in 2008 and more than half a million injuries.
Distracted driving is something that is so common place most people do not realize the deadly consequences, particularly given the rise in the number and type of communication devices now available.
Two studies by the New England Journal of Medicine and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found drivers who use cell phones are four times more likely to be involved in a crash. This is a particular problem among young drivers under 20 who have the highest proportion of distraction-related crashes. One of the reasons is the amount of thinking that is diverted from the essential task of driving. The Carnegie Mellon University found that using a cell phone while driving reduces the amount of brain activity needed for driving by 37 percent.
Zero Fatalities Nevada is taking the lead in urging all motorists throughout the state to take responsibility by signing the No Phone Zone Just Drive pledge. Driving is serious business and demands every bit of attention at all times. Driving instructors estimate that a driver makes about 200 decisions for every mile of driving. If you are talking on the phone or texting a friend, what is the affect on those decisions? Not only is talking or texting while driving illegal, it is also dangerous!
U.S. DOT and Consumer Reports Join Forces to Stop Distracted Driving
The U.S. Department of Transportation and Consumer Reports have formed a partnership to help educate parents, teachers, and teens about the dangers of distracted driving. Consumer Reports released the results of a new poll that shows younger drivers are more likely to use handheld devices while driving and less likely to view them as a danger. A free brochure called "Distracted Driving Shatters Lives" provides six steps parents can take to influence teens regarding distracted driving. To download a copy, click here.
WHO Looks at Driver Distraction
Driver distraction and the expanding use of mobile phones has caught the attention of the World Health Organization which released a report that explores the problem and identifies several recommended countermeasures to deal with it. To view a copy of the report, click here.
Orthopedic Specialists Launch Distracted Driving Campaign
The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) and the Orthopaedic Trauma Association (OTA) have launched a campaign that encourages drivers to “decide to drive.” The distracted driving campaign includes a new multimedia public service advertising (PSA) campaign, interactive Web site, school curriculum, print public service poster contest and materials to help surgeons talk to all their patients about distracted driving. To visit the interactive web site, click here.
Distracted Driving: So What's the Big Picture?
The Traffic Injury Research Foundation has released a report that examines the problem of distracted driving as a whole. Using research, policy documents, and the many activities underway in North America, the report draws a more complete picture of the problem and what is being done to solve it. For more information, click here.