No More Cell Phones While Driving?

That’s right. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is seriously urging lawmakers to consider the possibility of a ban on all personal electronic devices for anyone behind the wheel of a moving vehicle. That would include the use of any ‘hands free’ phones, making it very possible that an officer could, hypothetically, pull you over for talking while driving (that is, if they see your lips moving and no one in the passenger seat). Sound extreme? Perhaps, but not necessarily.

Since the dawn of the small, cellular phone (aka, less than 20 years ago), portable devices have become more interesting and certainly more distracting. Where they were once used to simply call mom and let her know you’ll be home for Christmas, it’s now almost impossible to walk down any street in the United States without seeing roughly 90% of the people walking while checking their email, visiting a website, or texting a friend on this handy-dandy little gadget. Oh, the temptation! Oh, the addiction!

With so many of us already sucked into the vaccuum of 24/7 phone usage, it’s hard to imagine putting down the phone for 20 minutes on the way home from work. Put my phone down for 20 minutes? Never! But proponents of this type of legislation argue that the percentage of car accidents would diminish drastically if more drivers were obligated to watch the road instead of trying to check scores on the latest game while moving 80 mph down the interstate. Laws are always intended for the public good and if the NTSB has its way, we all might have to rethink how important our 24/7 addictions to the phone really are. Putting them down for a little while, especially in traffic, might just do the world a favor.

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