Driving While Distracted by Cell Phone
Aug. 3, 2009
Has the time come for drivers to give-up cell phones while operating their vehicles? In Michigan, more municipalities and jurisdictions are saying, “maybe”. The cell phone lobby, however, says, “not yet”, and continues to block state-wide cell phone bans.
Despite the efficiencies achieved by the now-ubiquitous cell phone, Royal Oak, Southfield and other jurisdictions have considered outlawing this form of “multitasking”. Many other Waterford & Clarkston municipalities have enacted “driving while distracted” provisions which enhance the fines assessed when a cell phone factors into a traffic violation.
Many would say, “it’s about time.” Even the cell phone lobby may be coming around. A recent Sunday New York Times front-page article describes how the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association recently changed its position opposing cell phone bans, to a more “neutral” stance. The Sunday Times article, which summarizes the scientific data compiled about distracted driving, can be found at the following link: http://tinyurl.com/mq6r4x
Although mounting statistics compare cell phone driving to drunk driving, eight states have enacted legislation that prevent municipalities from passing ordinances prohibiting hand-held cell phone use. Other states like California, New York and New Jersey, have banned hand-held devices while driving. Royal Oak and Southfield may be next.
If you have suffered injuries from a driver distracted by a cell phone, or have had a traffic citation enhanced because of it, contact us to discuss your options.