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Print 101 comment(s) - last by Reclaimer77.. on Sep 29 at 6:30 PM

Texting on the road -- it won't "be back"

Everyone knows that text messaging while driving can be dangerously distracting.  A recent study revealed that texting is more dangerous to driving than drugs or alcohol.  Still many are fighting proposed legislation to ban texting while driving, complaining that it violates freedom and would limit options in an emergency.

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has taken a hard stance on texting while driving.  He championed and passed a ban on cell phone texting, which will go into effect January 1.  Offending motorists will pay $20 on their first violation, and $50 for each subsequent violation.  Gov. Schwarzenegger was pleased to push through the bill by California's Tuesday legislative deadline.

He hopes that the new bill will help dissuade drivers from using their cell phones when driving.  He states, "Banning electronic text messaging while driving will keep drivers' hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road, making our roadways a safer place for all Californians."

Following the September 12 collision between a Metrolink passenger train and a freight train, which killed 25 people and injured 135, and was possibly caused by railroad engineer texting, the California Public Utilities Commission has banned some railroad workers from texting on the job.

California also passed a ban on holding cell phones while driving, which took effect July 1.  The law only allows drivers to use hands-free headsets while driving.  Insurers, bicyclists and, interestingly, cell phone companies supported both bills.

Sen. Joe Simitian (D-Palo Alto), who wrote the new law, SB 28, and worked closely with Schwarzenegger states, "When somebody's distracted it puts not just the driver at risk but everybody else in the car and everybody else on the highway."

For those who think Gov. Schwarzenegger and California's traffic agency are joking about the ban, they might want to consider the figures on the recent ban on holding cell phones.  According to Tom Marshall, a spokesman for the California Highway Patrol, California state officers issued 19,753 citations to motorists.  This is in addition to the thousands more issued by local police departments.  While less drivers are stopped for the offense then speeding, the numbers add up Marshall said.  He states, "Why everybody isn't hands-free now, I have no idea."

Many states are considering similar laws, or already have such laws in place.  However, with the bipartisan leadership of the nation's most populous state taking a high-profile stand against text-and-drive, the new legislation may spread throughout the nation.



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Good.
By MrDiSante on 9/25/2008 10:47:03 AM , Rating: 5
Now if only Ontario would pass such laws there'd be no end to my joy. You can't imagine how much I hate driving with teenagers or oh-so-important business types yapping away on their cellphones, not staying in their damn lanes, not signaling turns and in general engaging in risky behaviour.

I'll take a driver fresh from his driving test over one of those any day.




RE: Good.
By VashHT on 9/25/2008 10:50:48 AM , Rating: 5
Don't pin it on teenagers completely, every day I see the majority of people driving while on their cellphones when I'm going to and from work. There are a ton of older people that do it, it's stupid to pretend like its only "those damn kids".

On a side note I wish they'd do that in Illinois, I watched a women text right through a stop sign the other week, she just drove straight through it while texting on her phone.


RE: Good.
By MrSmurf on 9/25/2008 11:13:44 AM , Rating: 4
90% of teensagers are bad drivers. They're cocky, inexperienced and don't usually pay attention. We all were at that age. But we all know where the real blame goes; the stupid ass train engineer.


RE: Good.
By omnicronx on 9/25/08, Rating: 0
RE: Good.
By SeeManRun on 9/25/2008 12:03:24 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
And yet drivers 15-20 years old only account for 12% of all fatal crashes and 16% of crashes in general.

Considering you can drive up until you're 90 (or more) then having a 5 year window of drivers causing 16% of all crashes, it obvious they get in too many crashes. Not to mention people in that age range probably drive fewer miles a year than someone outside the range (until you hit say 55 years old).


RE: Good.
By monomer on 9/25/2008 1:33:32 PM , Rating: 2
Here's a link to some statistics showing Driver fatalities by age. It's for a study of older drivers, but it certainly doesn't show teenage drivers in a good light.

http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/older_driver/older_fact...


RE: Good.
By tastyratz on 9/25/2008 2:17:51 PM , Rating: 4
That just goes on to prove my ongoing point.

Drivers above a certain age should be required to take a driving "re certification" test by state mandate.

Don't complain that we take away their freedom, because they take away our life. There are so many times I see hazards in the road and to no surprise its an elderly person behind the wheel.

Young or old being incapable of driving should result in a lack of having their license for everyone's safety... period.
Its controversial because its considered age discrimination.
I don't think we should take everyone's license at 65, but I think we should take some.
Its a known fact that mental capacity and reflexes decay as you reach an older age. If you cant keep up get the F off the road.

At the very least require proof of a recent eye exam for god sakes (and really that goes for any age. I've known so many people who drive without glasses who really need them)

But I guess we wont ever see that since the congress that votes things in is all old people.


RE: Good.
By LordanSS on 9/25/2008 7:15:21 PM , Rating: 5
Here in Brazil, every driving license is good for "5 years". After that period has passed, the driver has to go through a series of exams.

The exams the driver has to take vary. Every time you commit an infraction, you rack up "infraction points". The more severe the infraction, the more points you gain, being 7 the most. If you rack up 30 points, I believe, in the period of a year, you lose your driving license, and have to go through the whole "driving school" process again. If you never commited an infraction, on your first renewal you usually only have to do a health check (vision, etc), which isn't too bad. As time passes, you have to take other tests to be able to renew your license (first aid, laws of the road, defensive driving, etc).

Driving while talking on a cell phone, if I am not mistaken, is worth about 5 points... And alcohol is completely banned. An amount equal to about two longneck bottles of beer equals jailtime.


RE: Good.
By rbfowler9lfc on 9/25/2008 11:37:18 PM , Rating: 2
If only the driving lessons weren't so insufficient. 15 hours of low-speed city driving, a parallel parking test and bingo, you're ready to go! No road driving lessons, no night driving lessons, even blind men were granted licenses at times.


RE: Good.
By tastyratz on 9/26/2008 9:36:24 AM , Rating: 3
Here in the USA They require people attend a drivers education course when they are under a certain age. They then get a permit to drive with someone else for the first 6 months and then they can take a license test. After that its just money in the mail from time to time.
The course is not required and neither is the permit if you wait to get your license for a few years. Did I miss the boat where people learn to drive through osmosis if they are older?

We coddle our people too much because its more "inconvenient" for someone to not have a license when they are older.

The drivers education course we have now for students is a joke. You learn what color a stop sign is and that drugs are bad - other than that your not really prepared.

What we NEED are REAL experience requirements for drivers who first get their license... at ANY age. New drivers should absolutely be required to take an extreme course - One where they learn how to handle a car in emergency situations as accident avoidance. Any dummy can learn how to drive in a straight line or use their blinker... Its experience and knowhow at the edge that can determine life or death in a situation.

I live in New England where we can get some nasty snowstorms in the winter - the smartest thing I ever did was start going to blow donuts in a parking lot every first snowfall. It teaches excellent low traction car control.


RE: Good.
By Spivonious on 9/26/2008 9:58:09 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
Here in the USA They require people attend a drivers education course when they are under a certain age. They then get a permit to drive with someone else for the first 6 months and then they can take a license test. After that its just money in the mail from time to time.


Each state does it differently. In PA, there's short written test and an eye exam to get a permit. This permit is good for a year. You must have 50 hours of driving time signed off on by a parent before you can take your road exam. The road exam consists of driving around the block and parallel parking. If you pass, then you get your junior license. This lets you drive alone between the hours of 6AM and 10PM. Once you turn 18, you can get a full license which has no restrictions. They expire every 5 years, at which time it is simply sending money and getting a photo taken to renew.


RE: Good.
By rbfowler9lfc on 9/26/2008 12:15:34 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
I live in New England where we can get some nasty snowstorms in the winter - the smartest thing I ever did was start going to blow donuts in a parking lot every first snowfall. It teaches excellent low traction car control.

Yes, absolutely correct, practice makes perfect.

Can you trust someone with only 15hrs driving experience to be a full-blown driver? With no road driving experience?

Something is very, very wrong with the Brazilian driving license system. That's the reason Brazil spots more deaths/yr than USA, despite having 1/10th of the US' fleet size.


RE: Good.
By rudolphna on 9/25/2008 3:27:00 PM , Rating: 2
but they still have the overall highest percentage of all other age groups. Especially Males under 25. Which is why their insurance is sky high.


RE: Good.
By 67STANG on 9/25/2008 5:04:34 PM , Rating: 5
It should be illegal to charge different rates based on gender, as that is discrimination. I'm 28 and have never had an accident. My wife, who's 29, has had 3 (not to mention countless speeding tickets).

I hate to get started on a "sexist" rant, but I've notice the most impatient drivers in the world are women. The go into turn lanes to go around people making left turns, they pull out in front of people so they don't have to wait as long and they younger women are almost always preoccupied with other things while driving. In fact, I'd say 9 our of 10 times that I've been cut off or had someone pull out in front of me, it's been women.

Surely this can't just be me or where I live. I am actually quite interested to see if anyone else has noticed the same thing...


RE: Good.
By FITCamaro on 9/25/2008 7:06:58 PM , Rating: 4
I'm with you man. Even now that I'm over 25, I still pay more than women. Even those who've been in accidents and/or had tickets.

It's f*cking ridiculous. Just remember. Discrimination is always wrong unless its against whites and men.


RE: Good.
By Spivonious on 9/26/2008 10:02:09 AM , Rating: 4
I was stopped at a red light the other day. The car behind me was stopped as well. All of a sudden - BAM - the car behind me hits me. We pull over, I get out, no damage of course. An early 20s girl wearing designer sunglasses gets out of her monstrous SUV and says "oh, I thought we were moving." THE LIGHT WAS STILL RED!!


RE: Good.
By amanojaku on 9/28/2008 12:53:50 AM , Rating: 4
Did you inspect her bumper? ;-)


RE: Good.
By The0ne on 9/25/2008 4:37:22 PM , Rating: 2
My experience has been mainly with adults and not teenagers. Working in a high class community only makes things worse and the stereotype even stronger. You have your typical soccer mom, your working class mom, your grocery shopping mom, etc. And I'm pointing at females because most of these drivers have babies with them and the men are at work. You can pretty much forget about the rules of driving here. If you don't pay attention you will get hit because most are not paying attention to what they are doing, less the driving.

As far as teenagers, it's just how they are. I have 3 nephews attending college now. They're not bad drivers per say but they just really don't care how they drive. They get in, put the pedal to the floor and drive off. Too many factors with teenagers. But with Moms with babies and young kids, there's no excuse whatsoever. If one loses her kid because of her ignorance and stupidity I'm going to burst out laughing for sure.


RE: Good.
By FaceMaster on 9/28/2008 10:21:49 AM , Rating: 2
I think you're just sour that you're no longer that age.


RE: Good.
By FITCamaro on 9/25/08, Rating: 0
RE: Good.
By DeepBlue1975 on 9/25/2008 3:19:37 PM , Rating: 2
I'm addicted to texting.

Yet, I've never ever texted while driving, and never ever would. Just because it's plain stupid.

I have a bluetooth hands free installed on my car, so I can be called hassle free. But if anyone texts me while I'm driving, that person will have to wait till my trip finishes, or if I'm in the mood and in a quiet street, I could just stop the car in a non offensive spot and answer the damn thing.

Anyway I have distinctive ringing tones for my contacts, even for text messages (had to buy a little app called "messagetones" for that. It's great and works really nice on symbian phones), and if I know it is someone I want to answer to right away, I might just use the hands free to make a voice call.

Bluetooth kits for phones are pretty cheap, and phones with voice dialing capability are ubiquitously available so that you can still use your phone.

Even the most advanced kits allow the device to read the text messages out loud through your car's speakers...

So, no excuse to be an idiot. If you have several thousands to buy a car, you have at the very most a couple of hundreds to make your car a nice hands free host for your cell phone.


RE: Good.
By Aloonatic on 9/25/2008 5:04:25 PM , Rating: 2
You raise some good points, especially the Bluetooth hands-free car kits.

Why they are not a standard required by law like seat belts I really don't know?

Bluetooth has been around for ages after all.

Cassette tape players were still standard in most cars until very recently however so it is clear that the manufacturers do as much as possible to resist change and will not be keen to add extra "unnecessary" features as standard on all ranges unless they are compelled by law.

Especially the way the worlds economies are going.

I think that time has come that changes need to be made.

By the way, is it usual for mobile phones to come with a (wired) hands-free kit as it is over here in the UK? Every new phone I have seen for a while now comes with a set of headphones with a built in microphone and button to accept incoming calls.


RE: Good.
By G2cool on 9/26/2008 3:26:51 PM , Rating: 2
Soon the in car Wi-Fi will be standard and this conversation will be about laws against WoW while driving...


RE: Good.
By MrDiSante on 9/25/2008 12:47:28 PM , Rating: 2
I'm not saying it's only teenagers: I explicitly mentioned businessmen/women as well; moreover I explicitly said that I'd take a driver fresh from his/her road test (most likely a teenager) over a texter.

Furthermore, I'm sticking by my guns: in my experience it is predominantly younger drivers (teenagers was imprecise, under 23 I'd say) and business types who can't keep their eyes off their damn blackberries.

That being said, it doesn't matter who it is, if they're texting+driving their license should be revoked on the 3rd violation.


RE: Good.
By omnicronx on 9/25/2008 11:35:18 AM , Rating: 2
Do you really think this law that arnold put in place means anything? The reason many states and provinces are not putting such a law in place, is because it already falls under the dangerous driving laws. A 25 to 50 dollar fine is hardly enough to stop drivers, in fact it may only make it worse, now you will have people trying to hide their phones while they text.

What I think they should do, which is what ontario was proposing is that anyone under the age of 21 that does not have a full G license (we have a 3 tier system) should not be able to use their cell phones while driving, or they get their license suspended for say 30 days for the first offense, and up to a year on the second offense.


RE: Good.
By napalmjack on 9/25/2008 11:39:07 AM , Rating: 5
It's $25 for the first, $50 for the second, or you can go for the new unlimited plan for $199 a month...


RE: Good.
By Risforrocket on 9/26/2008 2:06:04 AM , Rating: 2
Oh man, I busted out on that.


RE: Good.
By Zoomer on 9/27/2008 7:31:46 AM , Rating: 2
Why not have fines that actually bite? These fines don't serve as a deterrant.

$250 for your first offense + 3 pts, $500 for the second + 6 pts, $1500 for subsequent offenses + pts.


RE: Good.
By GreenEnvt on 9/25/2008 12:52:31 PM , Rating: 2
Now, add on the perspective of being on a motorcycle (in Ontario too, but elsewhere as well). You have all those problems, plus now you are contstantly on the lookout for some car changing lanes into you, turning into your path, hitting you from behind, or cutting a corner and tossing gravel all over it.


RE: Good.
By gamerk2 on 9/25/2008 1:02:59 PM , Rating: 2
Here on long island, if you stop at a stop sign, you get rear ended. Most people just accelerate through them now (no slowdown at all).

Until people are put in jail for being idiots, it won't be enough.


RE: Good.
By Spivonious on 9/26/2008 10:09:38 AM , Rating: 2
Remind me never to go to Long Island. Geez.


RE: Good.
By johnadams on 9/25/2008 1:33:25 PM , Rating: 2
Texting is proven to be as dangerous as drinking while driving. People who text while on the road show no regard to their own and more importantly other road users' safety.

This is a good move by Arnie. All the other states should follow suit and ban this poor regard for road safety.

I believe this is an attitude issue that cuts across the age, sex, religion or race demographics. Then again, the younger crowd might do it more because of their lack of maturity and shortsightedness when weighing their actions.

We need more road safety campaigns to educate future road users. With that $700B mother of all bailouts, budget for safety campaigns may get cut and this could affect the quality and safety of road users in the future.


RE: Good.
By johnadams on 9/25/2008 1:36:03 PM , Rating: 2
"drinking while driving"

I meant "driving under the influence".


RE: Good.
By Myrandex on 9/25/2008 3:15:22 PM , Rating: 2
In Ohio texting while driving isn't needed as an excuse not to drive. Everyone has to show off their particularly common form of retardation by not signalling when turning. Half the time when I see someone signal I think it is an accident and they actually aren't turning. I almost got into a wreck the other day because of this. His signal was own, and he wasn't driving fast, so it looked like he was turning onto the road I was pulling out of...but I guessed wrong. He was actually going straight and just wanted to fake me out! He continued going straight for a couple of miles (with his stupid signal on) and then I turned off the road to get onto the highway.

Jason


RE: Good.
By NullSubroutine on 9/26/2008 6:13:56 AM , Rating: 2
Hmm, think maybe teenagers are the 'worst' drivers because they are the most inexperienced. If you were to set driver age requirement to be 30 years old, that would be the worst drivers (besides maybe elderly that are 100+ years old).

No matter what age you are going to start (beyond toddlers) they are going to be the most inexperienced and be in the most accidents. You also have to consider the amount of driving time these teens also do.

Where I am from, all the kids who were 'farm kids' or even town kids who helped out on a farm were better drivers than any other teens, because they had been operating motor vehicles for quite a few years before they got their driver license.


RE: Good.
By ShaolinSoccer on 9/26/2008 7:20:16 PM , Rating: 2
I once read an article about the human brain that said something about the area of the brain that controls common sense doesn't fully develop in most people until the age of 25. I don't know if the article was true but if it is, it would explain why most teenagers tend to do stupid things now and then.


RE: Good.
By NullSubroutine on 9/27/2008 1:17:18 AM , Rating: 2
I would say it would have to do with puberty and a crap tone of horomones. In my line of work people of all ages have no common sense (911/dispatching), I see stupid people of all ages and they are too easy to come by.


A more common sense approach
By pauldovi on 9/25/2008 10:42:41 AM , Rating: 2
I am a pilot and in flying there are many things that are legal to do, but will lead to you being in trouble / at fault in an incident.

For example, you can fly in certain air spaces without using a radio, and it is perfectly legal. However, if there is a collision / incident in that airspace because you weren't using your radio, you will be found at fault.




RE: A more common sense approach
By Adul on 9/25/2008 10:46:43 AM , Rating: 2
texting while driving has been banned in phoenix, be nice if they make it a statewide ban.


RE: A more common sense approach
By Amiga500 on 9/25/2008 11:18:29 AM , Rating: 3
Who is gonna give a f**k about blaming the right party when their wife and children are dead?

A good move by Arnie IMO.


RE: A more common sense approach
By UNHchabo on 9/25/08, Rating: 0
RE: A more common sense approach
By codeThug on 9/25/2008 11:47:54 AM , Rating: 2
If you had two teenagers driving you wouldn't think so. It's bad enough when they are screwing around with their mp3 players and the CD changer in the car. But to be mentally and visually distracted by typing text onto a keyboard 1/4 the size of my hand makes so sense whatsoever.

If the conversation is that goddamn important, then pull over and call the person.


RE: A more common sense approach
By mkrech on 9/25/2008 12:32:51 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
If you had two teenagers driving you wouldn't think so


It's ironic that the word "Parent" appears so many times on this web page and yet you don't seem to understand what it really means. When my child is a teenager and is faced with these issues it will NOT be a law that ensures that he drives safely. I believe that his safety is my responsibility above all else.

Sorry to be so harsh but laws are not what is needed. Personal responsibility is what is needed. If that was taught by parents in this country once again I would doubt that we would even need a law like this.


RE: A more common sense approach
By FITCamaro on 9/25/2008 3:21:38 PM , Rating: 2
How is people texting while driving useful? Your comparison between the two is not applicable.

If someone needs to send someone a message while driving, they can either call with their hands free set or wait until they get to their destination.


RE: A more common sense approach
By Dasickninja on 9/29/2008 8:34:39 AM , Rating: 2
One would wonder how stuff ever got done before cellphones, the passion that goes into defening it's use while driving.


By Reclaimer77 on 9/29/2008 6:30:07 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
One would wonder how stuff ever got done before cellphones, the passion that goes into defening it's use while driving.


Pretty ironic statement made by someone over the Internet using a computer...


By Reclaimer77 on 9/29/2008 6:25:15 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
How is people texting while driving useful?


Who are we to ask that question ?

I believe what someone does in their car, within reason, is their business. If you call yourself a conservative, thats really the only way to go.

I have seen drivers horribly distracted by a baby or small child in their cars as well. You wanna ban that too ?

Your argument is shockingly utalitarian man. You can't be for personal liberty, conservatism, and freedom when its convenient then just dismiss those qualities when its something you don't like or don't think is relevant.

This is nothing more than an extreemly liberal and corrupt state with a massively overtaxed budget looking for a new revenue source thats NOT in the form of more taxation. If it was a public safety issue there would be points against your license or other such repremands.


RE: A more common sense approach
By Aloonatic on 9/25/2008 3:56:50 PM , Rating: 2
When did this happen?

If you have proof that kitchen knives are banned it could get me out of all sorts of cooking chores.

It seems that all I am good for is chopping, peeling and slicing :-s

Are you confusing the law about carrying a blade on the street?

3 inches is all you're allowed, which is pretty safe as we are getting quite fat over here so that is not long enough to reach any vital organs and such, should you get stabbed.

http://www.police-information.co.uk/legislation/le...

quote:
Public Place

Source: Criminal Justice Act, 1988. Section 139(1).

Offence: It is an offence for any person, without lawful authority or good reason, to have with him in a public place, any article which has a blade or is sharply pointed except for a folding pocket-knife which has a cutting edge to its blade not exceeding 3 inches.

Powers: Arrestable offence.

It would seem that it is only an offence for Men to carry knives according to this sight however???


RE: A more common sense approach
By Aloonatic on 9/25/2008 4:00:30 PM , Rating: 2
sight = site, I no I no....

Before all the pedants get too excited, sorry.


RE: A more common sense approach
By Amiga500 on 9/26/2008 5:27:57 AM , Rating: 3
Kitchen knives are not banned you tool!


RE: A more common sense approach
By UNHchabo on 9/25/08, Rating: 0
By ChronoReverse on 9/25/2008 11:36:05 AM , Rating: 2
I have a problem with that. What if he's slightly swerving because of his actions and that leads to someone else doing a panic response and then unable to recover?

I'd rather avoid situations like that in the first place. I'm not sure I like a government ban to enforce this but it's pretty clear people aren't going to do this without incentive.


RE: A more common sense approach
By Aloonatic on 9/25/2008 3:30:01 PM , Rating: 2
I'd like to fire a gun whilst blindfolded into a crowed of people every morning.

As long as I don't hit anyone that's OK surely?

If I did, then that's a fair cop, prosecute me but until then I will carry on as I please.

/joking

Your cereal eating friend is a very lucky man.

It seems odd that it took so long for these laws to happen. They've been around (specifically) in the UK for only a short while, perhaps only a year or so.

Just be careful, a man was successfully prosecuted for moving a turned off mobile phone that was on his dashboard to the passenger seat, as this (in the eyes of which ever constabulary prosecuted him, I can't remember) fell into the category of "using" the mobile phone.

The police seem increasingly hot on traffic/car related offences over here. People are prosecuted for drinking water whilst sat stationary at traffic lights and the like.

I hope that your laws are worded better than ours and you have more reasonable law enforcement bodies over there in the States, not just target driven morons with a self important attitude and a chip on their shoulder who get off on a fair bit of power.


RE: A more common sense approach
By NullSubroutine on 9/26/2008 6:20:37 AM , Rating: 2
You drive to work every day, you could hit someone and kill them. Since there is a possiblity and a higher one than not driving, we should ban driving no?

These laws trying to get people to be more responsible don't have an effect of making a difference, people who are irresponsible will still will be regardless of what law is passed. All it will do is get some tickets written and make some money for the state.


RE: A more common sense approach
By Aloonatic on 9/26/2008 9:25:47 AM , Rating: 2
Great, so you agree that I should be allowed to fire randomly into a crowd as hitting someone is not a certainty?

The commentators point was a silly one though, which is what I was pointing out. Why increase the chances of someone getting hurt when what you are doing is really rather dangerous anyway and say that it is fine until someone gets hurt/killed?

People take driving for granted and think that they are safe but if the cars of today were to suddenly be invented over night now, having had only horses and carts yesterday, there is no way that anyone would think that it was safe that you can drive within a couple of feet of another car with a closing speed of over 100MPH as is common on single carriageways.

Saying that laws are useless as they will be broken is silly.

People are still being murdered even with death penalties in many countries around the world, so lets not bother making it illegal at all?

Are laws against murder just to make the lawyers money?

The guy eating cereal whilst driving should be arrested and have his licence taken away from him as well as some other penalty to deter others from doing what they do.

The poster doesn't seem to realise that it is possible for him to run over a child/children as well as bump into a solid object and cause a bit of damage and cost him a bit of money.

Saying that nothing should be done to take irresponsible people licenses away is just stupid.... no?

In case you missed the /joking part from my post, I don't really intend to fire a weapon into a crowd, just to make it crystal clear.


By NullSubroutine on 9/27/2008 1:54:29 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Great, so you agree that I should be allowed to fire randomly into a crowd as hitting someone is not a certainty?

No, there is a substantial difference in probable death or injury firing in a crowd vs texting while driving. Firing into a crowd is always going to be a grave risk, while texting while driving may vary depending on the driving circumstances, it will still just about not be ask risky as shooting at a crowd of people.
quote:
The commentators point was a silly one though, which is what I was pointing out. Why increase the chances of someone getting hurt when what you are doing is really rather dangerous anyway and say that it is fine until someone gets hurt/killed?

The reason why it isn't just a silly point is because there is always going to be things that people do that can cause them to have a higher chance of dieing or causing another's death. We are mortal beings. As a matter of law though, we can't simply outlaw every little thing and expect everyone will be saved. It isn't practical and it isn't realistic.
quote:
People take driving for granted and think that they are safe but if the cars of today were to suddenly be invented over night now, having had only horses and carts yesterday, there is no way that anyone would think that it was safe that you can drive within a couple of feet of another car with a closing speed of over 100MPH as is common on single carriageways

You are right, it is not safe. How do you expect to enforce a law to save lives with the intent of the law to get people to stop doing behaviors that risks other persons lives, when they do not take the same care of their own life?

The law does not prevent anything, the risk is still there.
quote:
Saying that laws are useless as they will be broken is silly.

Actually it is far from silly, as is the idea you don't pass laws that are impossible to enforce, as this law most certainly is. Innocent until proven guilty is a matter of law in all cases, and how do you propose one is going to prove the person is texting? Such evidence would require a witness able to actually see the person pressing buttons that is texting and not dialing a phone number (which is leagal to do)?

The state of Califorina already has a bogged down criminal justice system and doesn't have the resources to address these issues when they go to court (any sane person would fight this ticket on matter of lack of evidence).

What you have is a beaurcratic answer to a social problem, irresponsibility.
quote:
People are still being murdered even with death penalties in many countries around the world, so lets not bother making it illegal at all?

Except in the case of predmeditated murder, laws against it don't really 'stop' people from being murdered as you have already pointed out. I don't really see how you can equate enforcement and existence of traffic laws with criminal homicide. One has the remote possiblity someone may die, the other is the act of actually killing someone else.

If someone gets killed because someone is texting, that is still going to be a type of homicide or manslauther, but what this law here is doing is the equivlent of making it illegal to carry a knife, or holding a lamp as that may be used to kill someone. That sort of policy is down right rediculous. You make the act (the result) illegal, not every step taken up to that point, especially when all those steps can be done in a legal way that does not cause death.
quote:
Are laws against murder just to make the lawyers money?

No.
quote:
The guy eating cereal whilst driving should be arrested and have his licence taken away from him as well as some other penalty to deter others from doing what they do.

He should have his license taken away for any harm he causes for doing such behavior, not doing the behavior itself.
quote:
The poster doesn't seem to realise that it is possible for him to run over a child/children as well as bump into a solid object and cause a bit of damage and cost him a bit of money.

Or, he could be charged the result of his crime, not the actions that led up to the crime. His actions are already dealt with the law, your opinion is completely the opposite of how law works.
quote:
Saying that nothing should be done to take irresponsible people licenses away is just stupid.... no?

You take away such things when people actually DO something that causes harm, not that they do something that has the remote potentiality to do harm.
quote:
In case you missed the /joking part from my post, I don't really intend to fire a weapon into a crowd, just to make it crystal clear.

Yes I understood that.


RE: A more common sense approach
By jimbojimbo on 9/25/2008 3:39:43 PM , Rating: 2
So it's OK for someone to hit you with a car as long as they pay for your hospital stay? I'd rather not get hit at all.


Phone companies
By Meaker10 on 9/25/08, Rating: 0
RE: Phone companies
By MrSmurf on 9/25/2008 11:09:53 AM , Rating: 5
Yeah, I'm sure there will be tons of hands-free text messaging devices on the market.


RE: Phone companies
By codeThug on 9/25/2008 11:49:58 AM , Rating: 2
+10


RE: Phone companies
By Meaker10 on 9/25/2008 12:08:51 PM , Rating: 1
"California also passed a ban on holding cell phones while driving, which took effect July 1. The law only allows drivers to use hands-free headsets while driving. Insurers, bicyclists and, interestingly, cell phone companies supported both bills."

They were behind that ban, and I think there are quite a few hands free calling kits out there.

Try reading the article next time.


RE: Phone companies
By Oregonian2 on 9/25/2008 1:54:51 PM , Rating: 2
Does California actually ban holding a cell phone or is it holding a cell phone while making a phone call?

Taking out a phone containing a dead-as-a-doornail battery out of one's shirt pocket in order to pass it to the passenger who is going to hook it to the charger is illegal in California?


RE: Phone companies
By TowedJumper on 9/25/2008 3:57:46 PM , Rating: 2
From the DMV.CA.GOV website....
http://www.dmv.ca.gov/cellularphonelaws/index.htm
See the Drivers 18 and over section for this FAQ entry.

Q: Does the new “hands-free” law prohibit you from dialing a wireless telephone while driving or just talking on it?
A: The new law does not prohibit dialing, but drivers are strongly urged not to dial while driving.

So, holding your phone is not illegal, and I bet you could get away with calling "texting" "dialing" as they both use the same keys although I wouldn't want to be the one to put that in front of jury with my butt on the line. There is a FAQ entry just a bit down that says an police officer can pull you over if he/she feels you are not driving safely however, regardless of you holding the phone or not.

I bet this is why Arnie is submitting this for law, to close the loophole.


RE: Phone companies
By Oregonian2 on 9/25/2008 6:06:19 PM , Rating: 2
To tell the truth I never caught on to texting, especially with a cell phone where I could just call and talk to whomever (and with voice recognition I can call say "call xxxxx" where xxxxx is anybody in the phone's number list (recognition works amazingly well too)). But then I'm not someone trying to "talk" privately amongst grownups around me.

:-)

Could argue that I'm "texting" now (although my long-spelling doesn't confirm that) but it's not on a phone. :-)


RE: Phone companies
By LivingDedBoy on 9/25/2008 1:55:19 PM , Rating: 3
The article is about Texting and driving.


RE: Phone companies
By jimbojimbo on 9/25/2008 3:41:53 PM , Rating: 2
When I was reading the article I thought this new law is absolutely pointless unless people have been texting with their phone on their lap or something. I pretty much have to hold my cell phone to text on it which is illegal as of July 1st anyway.


RE: Phone companies
By Hoser McMoose on 9/25/2008 6:44:20 PM , Rating: 2
Shameless plug:

http://www.ilane.com/


Moving Violations
By wallijonn on 9/25/2008 10:53:00 AM , Rating: 3
A $20 ticket is nothing. The fine should be $500 for the first offence, $2500 for the second, $5000 for the third; with driver safety school attendance mandatory at the first, 30 days drivers suspension on the second and a 5 year ban on the third. Any accident which can be directly attributed to text messaging while driving should carry a $10,000 fine and 90 days in jail, $5000 if just a cell phone was used, with 30 days in jail.

Here in Phoenix the moving violation fine for DUI is $6000. Now we need hands free mobile driving law and a ban on text messaging. Why should the text messaging fine be any less than a DUI? The drunk can say that he had both hands on the wheel, the text messager has none.




RE: Moving Violations
By monomer on 9/25/2008 11:00:26 AM , Rating: 3
Heck, why stop at suspending their driver's licence? Since these people obviously can't go without texting for a few minutes, losing their right to own a cell-phone would help curtail the problem.


RE: Moving Violations
By daniyarm on 9/25/2008 11:39:52 AM , Rating: 4
Exactly. Block their messaging for 1 year and fine them $1000. Seriously, if they say texting is more dangerous than a DUI, then make the punishment as severe as a DUI at the very least. Why are they getting less of a punishment for a worse crime.


RE: Moving Violations
By chris2618 on 9/25/2008 2:09:49 PM , Rating: 2
i think it should have a worse punishment than DUI. As when you are drunk you are sort of not totally in control but when people are texting when driving they really do know what they are doing


RE: Moving Violations
By jimbojimbo on 9/25/2008 3:52:21 PM , Rating: 2
I live in the city with the highest sales tax in the US. I say raise fines for cell phone use while driving and let us law abiding citizens keep our hard earned money.

I suggest in the cases of multiple offenses that they be significantly increased. If it's $50 for texting, and say $50 for failure to signal, doing both would be a fine of $250 instead. Something along those lines.


texting = morons
By Finnkc on 9/25/2008 12:17:14 PM , Rating: 2
Is it me, or is texting like using a shoes lace and a tin can to communicate when the person is right beside you? If I need to talk to someone I call them ... why people waste time typing, when they can just dial a number and talk is beyond me. Or why talk to text isn't available on all cell phones yet is another wonder. But then again most people are no smarter then a pine cone so I guess that is why.




RE: texting = morons
By walk2k on 9/25/2008 12:29:42 PM , Rating: 2
I use text when reception isn't good enough (or when my battery is about to die) but that's about it.

You're right though, people are DUMB and need laws to protect them from themselves.


RE: texting = morons
By BadAcid on 9/25/2008 12:31:26 PM , Rating: 2
I'm still stuck at why don't people enjoy the world around them instead of whipping out their cell phones the second they walk out of class / office to ask the same exact lines "Where are you?" "What're you doing?" every damn time, regardless of whether the receiver is in class / work at the time. Thanks, I'll go about my day without a leash, there's roses to be smelled.


RE: texting = morons
By ShaolinSoccer on 9/26/2008 7:26:03 PM , Rating: 2
When you're a kid, the world is new and everything you look at is exciting. As most people get older, they stop living in the world around them and start living in the world inside their head...


I Must Be Missing Something
By kelmon on 9/25/2008 12:39:01 PM , Rating: 2
Here's the thing I don't understand:

quote:
Still many are fighting proposed legislation to ban texting while driving, complaining that it violates freedom and would limit options in an emergency.


What sort of emergency can you be suffering, whilst driving, that gives you the opportunity to whack off a text message? Surely it is more likely that texting whilst driving is more likely to cause an emergency in the first place.

It has to be said that bans on using mobiles while driving doesn't seem to have had that much of an effect but at least the fuzz are well within their rights to pull over the driver of the car and batter them with their phone.




By PhoenixKnight on 9/25/2008 3:13:24 PM , Rating: 2
What if you see an accident and have to text a deaf 9-1-1 operator?


RE: I Must Be Missing Something
By jimbojimbo on 9/25/2008 3:46:19 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly. If it was really an emergency is texting really the most efficient way to go? Come on. I want my freedom to keep living so I'm completely for the ban. I wish it was country wide.


RE: I Must Be Missing Something
By TowedJumper on 9/25/2008 4:07:34 PM , Rating: 2
Texting wouldn't be the way to go for 911. Its a best effort type of service so there is no way to guarantee your message will ever get there or when. Seriously, is 4 hours later ok if you are dealing with 911?

And deaf 911 operators? Not that I call often but I would think verbal communication would be a pre-requisite for that job and deaf 911 operators isn't something you would run into.


By kattanna on 9/25/2008 11:44:26 AM , Rating: 2
the ban on non hands free talking while driving hasnt done much here, everywhere i go i still see lots of people driving with the cell phone to their heads.




By Davelo on 9/25/2008 4:17:45 PM , Rating: 2
Me too and I live in California. I still see people driving around holding a cell phones to there heads like they could care less about the law.

This texting while driving is mainly kids. It all started as a way to communicate with friends in class on the sly. They took to it so much that they continue it to other facets like driving. It takes a real numbskull to do it while driving though. But that is basically what most kids are. They have little common sense these days.

I have a hands free bluetooth for my cell phone which I do use mostly for work. But I still have to dial numbers while driving which I hate to do because it is dangerous. I wish I had voice recognition for dialing. My next phone will have it. I think it should also become the law.


Interesting how?
By DeepBlue1975 on 9/25/2008 3:51:28 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
California also passed a ban on holding cell phones while driving, which took effect July 1. The law only allows drivers to use hands-free headsets while driving. Insurers, bicyclists and, interestingly, cell phone companies supported both bills.


It's not interesting that cell companies are for this.

1- this means better possibilities of selling hands free kits.

2- this does not mean, in any possible way, that people will stop buying cell phones.

So,

1- It doesn't negatively affect their profits in any way
2- It even could potentially boost some of their products' sales.

Basically, what is so interesting about a company being in favor of a very logical regulation that can not affect their profits at all and yet could gain them some good reputation among government authorities?

Seriously, I don't get the strange part of this.




RE: Interesting how?
By TowedJumper on 9/25/2008 4:03:57 PM , Rating: 2
Actually it is interesting. Its more of a pain to make calls now and to receive them. I wonder how much the wireless company's usage has dropped since the law came out? I know my company in particular has a in-house rule that says if you have to make a call, only managment are allowed to do so while driving, and even then they need to pull to the side of the road and make the call. In light of stuff like that I am pretty sure there are less calls being made. Less calls made equals less chance of overages and less billable minutes for the telco's. Simple math.


Welcome to the Nanny State
By TowedJumper on 9/25/08, Rating: 0
RE: Welcome to the Nanny State
By Davelo on 9/25/2008 4:24:06 PM , Rating: 2
Your freedom ends where my nose begins!

You probably don't like speed limits or DUI laws either. You wan't to get rid of traffic lights too? You don't need no stinking lights telling you when to stop!


RE: Welcome to the Nanny State
By DeepBlue1975 on 9/25/2008 7:27:57 PM , Rating: 2
Ok, feel free to be one of those absolute idiots that text while driving and gets killed.
Somebody texting while driving getting killed is perfectly acceptable for me. But you know what?
Idiots that imprudent, when they get killed in a car accident, usually take actually valuable lives with them.

Idiots that are irrespectful of common sense and disrupt society in a destructive way (like idiots texting while driving) don't deserve to live. Actually, I think they shouldn't even have the right to be given birth at all.

I don't get it how some people confuse freedom with something almost as stupid as saying "I should have the right to kill and rape every person I want".


Hands Free MORE distracting
By Alphafox78 on 9/25/2008 5:06:31 PM , Rating: 2
I understand the idea behind hands free, but it takes so much more time and distraction to take out your phone, turn on your bluetooth, enable it on your phone (I leave it disabled as it kills my battery) then look for the contact and dial... then the volume is low, or the battery in the bluetooth is dead, or people complain they cant hear you. I dont even care any more, I just use it as a phone. its not illegal here (yet) but in a state next to me it is. I see people holding phones all the time there.
The conversation is more distracting than holding the phone anyways.. if your going to make it illegal to hold a phone then you should make stick shifts illegal as you have to have your hand on them all the time.




RE: Hands Free MORE distracting
By Davelo on 9/25/2008 7:00:25 PM , Rating: 2
Hands-free mode automatically engages when I turn on my bluetooth earphone, which I can do without looking at it. I can feel for the button that turns it on. Now dialing the phone is a different story. Still trying to master dialing without looking at it. It should be like typing on a PC keyboard.


Handfree
By Fant on 9/25/2008 11:10:53 AM , Rating: 1
How about they force all car makers to integrate Bluetooth speakerphone capability into all cars (ie not optional even on the base lines)?




RE: Handfree
By F3R4L on 9/25/2008 12:15:58 PM , Rating: 2
Hey, how about we force people to have their babies implanted with Bluetooth receivers in their heads at birth.

Better yet, how about we force cell phone makers to put put a device in a cell phone that would make the phone not work if the user were within five feet of a steering wheel.

Or, how about we force people to get a license to be able to reproduce and only allow one child per household...


Makes sense!
By Narcofis on 9/25/2008 10:54:24 AM , Rating: 2
I actually approve of this legislature. I sound like a commercial.

When your texting all your attention goes to the screen which slows your reaction time. When i'm driving, I'm sure you all notice also, It's always funny to see how different a person is driving once they answer the phone. Most of the time you see them slow down and swirve from left to right from lack of attention. Now apply this to texting, your typing your text paying attention to your screen and the guy in front of you slams on the breaks. You got no chance of recovery.

Also, on a different note isn't there a law about billboards where they can't be flashy because it distracts drivers. In my opinion, the same thing applies to cell phones.




All we need is...
By GhandiInstinct on 9/25/2008 11:14:45 AM , Rating: 2
voice texting on our cell phones.




By TechGuyCalifornia on 9/25/2008 7:06:36 PM , Rating: 2
Cellphones should be banned while driving period. Here are my thoughts on the regulations although they are contradictory to other functions in the car.

1. No holding of a cellphone in a car is allowed for any reason unless you are stopped on the side of the road in a safe area.
2. Texting on phones should be stopped totally, the regulators should force cellphone companies to turn it off immediately. If you need to contact someone, CALL THEM!!!. Stop being unsociable and lazy, just CALL THEM if you need to contact them. It's a phone!
3. Any other functions inside the car should be stopped as well; such as applying make-up while driving, eating, rubbernecking, kissing, adjusting radio, mp3 player manipulation, drinking etc. These actions can also prove to be very dangerous as well. I think violations should be given out to people that are committing these actions as well.
4. The fines should be higher! This stupid $25 for the first offense is rediculous, make it $125!! and then $500 for the second offense. People can die out there if you are looking at your damn phone!!
5. How are they going to ban texting while driving! Are your texts monitored? NO is the correct answer, they are not! If you can't hold your phone, why is the governor making a new law! This is stupid, they should have made an ammendment to the current law, which obviously points to NOT holding your F'ing phone!

I am fine with not holding my phone of even using it while driving!! I am discusted with the overall texting anyway as the kids, adults, etc are texting eachother because it is too personal to just damn well call someone. LAME is the word. This law is stupid, just ammend the current law. It is obvious that these NON-Techies are not understanding how it works.

I see people texting really low so that nobody sees them which is now getting very dangerous as the attention and the peripheral field of view is now very limited if your looking further down. This law now makes it even more dangerous for drivers as they are trying to avoid violations.




A Hard Stance?
By lightfoot on 9/25/2008 7:53:29 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has taken a hard stance on texting while driving. ... Offending motorists will pay $20 on their first violation, and $50 for each subsequent violation.


That's not a hard stance. That is barely a slap on the wrist. A hard stance would be arresting the driver and impounding their car (like they would do to a drunk driver.)

This is pathetic.

Its fine to use a fine as a deterrent, but it must be significant enough to actually deter people from doing it. $200 for the first offence and $500 for subsequent offences would be more realistic. Maybe even require a mandatory court appearance.




$20 - WTF
By PWNettle on 9/26/2008 6:18:30 PM , Rating: 2
$20 is a joke - that won't deter anything.

It probably will cost more in beauracracy and other related costs than they'll ever gain - no wonder california is always has financial problems. And who is going to ever enforce such a pissant thing?

The only way people will obey this is if you threaten to take away their license and enforce it. So fines in the hundreds for 1-2 offenses then suspended license on the 3rd.

Frick, did Blizzard take over california govt? These punishments are even gimpier than what Blizzard does to WoW cheaters and exploiters.




WTF!
By Regs on 9/25/2008 1:32:34 PM , Rating: 1
Man this going to suck. Im usually done finishing my 3rd novel by the time I reach work.




By SiliconAddict on 9/25/2008 7:05:38 PM , Rating: 1
And that is what this law is designed to do. Yes in a perfect world there shouldn't be such laws. But the simple fact remains that common sense in the general public has dropped substantiually in the last generation or two. Such laws shouldn't be needed to enforce common sense, but when people aren't willing to use it...well there it is.

And the whole emergency thing is horsecrap. In an emergency a cop is NOT going to ticket you. Just as I didn't get pulled over when I ran a red light to get out of a cops way who was trying to get around me at an intersection. And sorry but the babysitter being 30 minutes late ain't an emergency. Fucking spoiled Americans...yes I'm an American too. The difference being I don't believe I have some god given right to text in the damn car or use my cell in a thertre. Use your brain people. It was given to you for a reason.




All I can say is....
By Trisagion on 9/25/08, Rating: 0
By jimbojimbo on 9/25/2008 3:55:33 PM , Rating: 4
Not true. I don't give a rat crap if texting while driving will kill them. Sometimes I actually hope it does. I give a crap that while they're doing it they will kill someone else.


"What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." -- Michael Dell, after being asked what to do with Apple Computer in 1997














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