FEEDBACK

Distracted Driving

May 4, 2012 • Volume 22, Issue 17
Should driver texting and cellphone use be banned?
By David Hosansky

Introduction

Cellphone-using drivers in the United States had the highest rates of fatal accidents (Getty Images/The Christian Science Monitor/Tony Avelar)
Cellphone-using drivers in the United States under age 20 and ages 30–39 had the highest rates of fatal accidents. More than 5,000 people were killed and nearly half a million injured in crashes involving distracted driving in 2009, the most recent data available. (Getty Images/The Christian Science Monitor/Tony Avelar)

Drivers have long tried to manage any number of distractions ranging from eating a snack and reading a map to dealing with unruly children in the backseat and putting on makeup. But with the increasing popularity of cellphones and texting, distracted driving has emerged as a central concern of safety experts. Studies indicate that distractions are involved in more than 5,000 traffic fatalities every year. Most states have enacted laws to restrict texting or talking on handheld cellphones, and policymakers face calls for a near-total ban even on hands-free communications devices — including those that are built into the dashboards of new cars and heavily marketed by automakers. But even if more restrictive laws were passed, many motorists would find it hard to set aside the devices they have come to rely upon to make business and personal calls and also to check websites or update their Facebook pages.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Highways and Roads
May 04, 2012  Distracted Driving
Sep. 28, 2007  Aging InfrastructureUpdated
Oct. 06, 2000  Drunken Driving
Mar. 12, 1999  Truck Safety
Jul. 14, 1995  Highway Safety
Oct. 09, 1981  Interstate Highway System at Twenty-Five
May 05, 1965  Highway Design and Beautification
Sep. 02, 1960  Progress of the Road Program
Mar. 06, 1957  Billboards and Roadside Controls
Dec. 13, 1954  New Highways
Jul. 25, 1939  Prevention of Highway Accidents
May 13, 1935  Elimination of Highway Grade Crossings
Dec. 24, 1932  Federal Highway Aid and the Depression
Apr. 30, 1931  Billboards and Roadside Improvement
Feb. 14, 1929  Toll Bridges and Toll Roads
Jul. 11, 1927  Ten Years of Federal Aid in Road Building
BROWSE RELATED TOPICS:
Motor Traffic Safety
FEEDBACK

Your Email Address

Subject

Provide Feedback

Suggest a topic here.

Type the characters you see below into the box

Take our survey to help us improve CQ Researcher!