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Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood  (Source:
The California and Delaware programs will test out increased law enforcement and public education campaigns for distracted driving

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood has unveiled his “Blueprint for Ending Distracted Driving” plan, and also provided California and Delaware with $2.4 million for distracted driving enforcement.
The new “Blueprint for Ending Distracted Driving” calls for four crucial steps toward the elimination of distracted driving. The four steps are as follows: Encouraging the 11 states without distracted driving laws to enforce such legislation; push the auto industry to adopt guidelines for technology used in vehicles; offer educational lessons to new drivers about distracted driving; and provide all stakeholders with options for ending distracted driving for good.
“Distracted driving is an epidemic,” said LaHood. “While we’ve made progress in the past three years by raising awareness about this risky behavior, the simple fact is people are continuing to be killed and injured – and we can put an end to it. Personal responsibility for putting down that cell phone is a good first step – but we need everyone to do their part, whether it’s helping pass strong laws, educating our youngest and most vulnerable drivers, or starting their own campaign to end distracted driving.”

Last month, the U.S. Department of Transportation expressed concerns over automakers' decisions to continue adding in-vehicle technology that could aid distracted driving. It said automakers were doing this just to sell vehicles more easily, offering fun new gadgets and technology to entice drivers.
In addition to the new blueprint, the Department of Transportation is also awarding California and Delaware with $2.4 million for distracted driving enforcement and campaigns.
The pilot programs in both states will investigate whether increased law enforcement and paid media coverage can help decrease cases of distracted driving.
“We know from the success of national efforts like ‘Click it or Ticket’ that combining good laws with effective enforcement and a strong public education campaign can – and does – change unsafe driving behavior,” said David Strickland, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Administrator. “Now, along with two great state partners, we’re using this proven formula to help tackle distracted driving.”
The pilot programs will take place in eight counties in the Sacramento valley region, which has 3.8 million residents, and statewide throughout Delaware. The pilot programs are to begin in fall 2012.

Source: U.S. Department of Transportation

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RE: The real epidemic
By leviathan05 on 6/11/2012 8:50:57 AM , Rating: 2
Driving is a privilege, not a right. In order to retain that privilege, it is expected that you conform to specific behaviors while you are behind the wheel. Some of them are more obvious than others, such as driving in the same direction as other traffic and stopping when signaled to do so.

But all laws in regards to driving should be about protecting the safety of everyone on the road. Restricting phone use while driving meets this standard without unduly burdening anyone in the process. Nobody was driving with a phone in their hands 20 years ago, and they were able to continue living their lives. It aggravates me to no end when I see people with their phones out while driving because they tend to be the people disrupting the flow of traffic.

I don't support most nanny-state type laws, but I find this type of regulation acceptable and I approve.

I do, however, find the implementation to be highly lacking.

RE: The real epidemic
By The Raven on 6/11/2012 12:16:18 PM , Rating: 2
So you are saying that you are ok with getting a BJ and eating a hambuger while driving? Because I don't see you proposing a law to ban that.

RE: The real epidemic
By topkill on 6/11/2012 4:18:36 PM , Rating: 2
ROFLMFAO! Best response in this whole thread...Thanks for the laugh.

RE: The real epidemic
By NellyFromMA on 6/11/2012 4:50:39 PM , Rating: 2
Burger job?

RE: The real epidemic
By JediJeb on 6/11/2012 12:39:00 PM , Rating: 2
You are right that the laws should help protect us from others, but there is no need to add another law. There is already a law against reckless driving, which would include distracted driving. If the law enforcement agencies would just work to enforce the reckless driving law, there would be no need at all to add yet another law that covers the same thing.

We have laws covering purchase of guns, yet when something happens involving a rifle, they make another law to cover the rifle, then something happens involving a pistol and they make a law to cover a pistol, then something happens involving a semi automatic pistol and they make a new law to cover semi automatic pistols...ect,,ect. One law usually covers what needs to be covered but lawmakers have to do something to justify their existence so they just keep making layer upon layer of laws that all cover the same thing.

Laws do need to be reviewed and updated sometimes, but there needs to be some logic to the process and some restraint when proposing new laws that cover something that is already covered in another form.

RE: The real epidemic
By NellyFromMA on 6/11/2012 4:49:58 PM , Rating: 2
In this country, you will have to search deep for the difference between a privilege and an entitlement. Dig for it.

RE: The real epidemic
By knutjb on 6/12/2012 12:09:08 PM , Rating: 2
I don't support most nanny-state type laws, but I find this type of regulation acceptable and I approve.
As I posted elsewhere on the subject:
How often do you hear law enforcement preventing something from happening vs. mopping up the mess after the fact. This idea that LaHood has falls into the later category. All the cellphone laws I know of do not allow cops to pull over offenders solely for that. States use laws like this to raise money after the fact as an add-on to other violations, i.e. swerving, speeding, driving too slow, accident, etc...

LaHood means well, I think he would like to keep people from getting hurt. Unfortunately he hasn't figured out, like most law makers and bureaucrats, you can't fix stupid. To punish bad behavior after the fact is fine if you understand that is all it can do. Once he believes he will make you change your behavior because he knows best is where the problem resides. I believe from Lahood's previous actions he falls into this false trap.

When he doesn't get the change he demands he will just add to it, i.e. seatbelts, cars have had seatbelts for a long time but many refused to use them. So they added beepers and lights to annoy you into using them.

It comes down to expectations of what a law can do. LaHood demands the public to change by his fiat. Why, because he knows better than you. When Bureaucrats believe they are the end all authority you get nothing more than ineffective rules that fail to deliver.

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