• Sep 22, 2010
Judging from the statistics that the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration recently released, distracted driving is a big problem here in the States. Researchers have found that one of the largest sources of distraction behind the wheel comes from hand-held devices – cell phones, smart phones, media players and the like. According to The Detroit News, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood has mentioned that he would like to see some sort of visual warning on cell phones alerting users to the dangers of using the devices while behind the wheel.

However, the suggestion isn't likely to evolve into a full-fledged motion by NHTSA. LaHood simply made the comment off-hand during an interview, but that doesn't mean that mobile phone makers weren't paying attention. The handheld phone industry has said that it will meet with LaHood to discuss the possibility, though its products come with a warning about being careful while operating them.

Would it help? We seriously doubt it. Mobile phones have evolved into too great a temptation for most drivers to ignore while behind the wheel, and another visual warning isn't going to do too much to change that.

[Source: The Detroit News]


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  • 43 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      Should work as well as surgeon general warnings on a pack of smokes
      • 4 Years Ago
      Some people should wear warning labels.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I think Bill Engvall said something about that.

        And was handing out signs, or something... :D
      • 4 Years Ago
      Funny, when the posted about this guy the other day, everyone was praising him. Now if I say we should do way with nav screens and use strictly voice guided nav I get downranked. But this guy wants to use warning labels, psh....
        • 4 Years Ago
        @AnalogDan

        I was gonna say you're superficial but you've spoke for yourself. Thanks
        • 4 Years Ago
        You get downranked because you're SimpleCar.
      • 4 Years Ago
      how about doubling fines for traffic violations if they are committed while using a cell phone?

      i don't see how this would be any harder to enforce than simply ticketing someone for cell phone use.

      i would rather see people who pay more attention to their devices than their driving punished, rather than an outright ban.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Mr LaHood, I'll smoke to that
      • 4 Years Ago
      Since almost all of the "texting" phones come with a GPS app just fix the app so that you cant text (or talk) if the GPS senses the thing going faster than a normal walking pace.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Go away Mr. LaHood. We don't need more warning labels for the obvious. Distracted driving involves a lot more than cell phones. We'll need them for makeup kits and newspapers as well.

      When our whole world is warning labels, they tend to get ignored.



        • 4 Years Ago
        Agreed. A look at the numbers should tell people that cell phones haven't turned our roads into the automatic death sentence that so many people are making them out to be.

        Cell phone subscriptions have sky rocketed over the last 10 years. Car wrecks have gone down.

        http://jalopnik.com/5644967/texting-and-driving-may-not-lead-to-more-crashes

        Don't get me wrong, texting is a problem, but judging by the frequency at which you hear about "texting while driving" articles and the like, you'd think it's a much bigger problem than it actually is.
      • 4 Years Ago
      At this rate we'll need warning labels on walls stating they'll hurt us if we walk into them...
        • 4 Years Ago
        This is already under the umbrella of "RECKLESS DRIVING"

        Which is already a moving violation, and the jurisdiction of the states, not the feds.

        The feds should just make sure that out of state drivers aren't unfairly targeted, and coordinate inter-state jurisdictional cases, and facilitate states cooperation and refinement of law enforcement.

        LaHood is an executive branch staff member, he IS NOT A LAWMAKER.

        Enforce the laws we already have, or repeal them, before replacing them with redundancy/bureaucracy.
        • 4 Years Ago
        There should be a warning label...on T.S. LaHood's mouth.
        • 4 Years Ago
        How about cellphone jammers in every car/truck/bus manufactured as of January 2011?
        You would have to turn øff the ignition to use your cellphone.

        LOL----everyone would soon find the little red wire or fuse that would kill the jammer.

        • 4 Years Ago
        I think we need warning stickers stuck on the heads of the politicians warning us to NOT VOTE for them
        • 4 Years Ago
        Forget the warning.
        If they [NTSB] are saying that it is as dangerous as drunk driving, treat it the same! Heavy fines, points on the driving record etc.. And what ever else is needed to make it a very expensive thing to do while driving, should you get caught.

        These warnings are useless. If they did what they supposed to do I'd be a non smoker today. Placing labels means squat to those who text while driving.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Which reminds me of "Homer's Odyssey" in The Simpsons where Homer puts a warning sign on everything and everywhere.
      • 4 Years Ago
      This kinda fails...

      A lot of new phone's already come with a big sticker on the screen that says texting and driving is bad. You take it off though. Obviously.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'd love to see Apple letting someone put labels on their phones/products.
      • 4 Years Ago
      C'mon folks.

      this is the DC two-step.

      Step one: Distract people with some issue of concern that has very little to do with what the government should actually be doing.

      Step two: while the "Homer Simpsons to be manipulated" as Cass Sunstein calls the majority of americans, are distracted...
      Do what you really want to do, but what the american people, and the Constitution should bar you from doing.

      The question is not why LaHood is futzing with stupid warning labels....

      The question is, what are LaHood's colleagues in the WH doing otherwise, that this is distracting us from? The things that they aren't sending out press releases about.
      • 4 Years Ago
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