Transportation Secretary Ray LaHoodThe U.S. Department of Transportation is looking into a full-on mobile phone ban for commercial drivers while behind the wheel as part of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood's initiative to curb distracted driving. According to Reuters, the move would further impact the four million drivers who are already forbidden from texting while driving.

Last year, driver inattention was cited as the prevailing factor for around nine percent of all large truck crashes in 2009. That number was down from 2008, but not low enough for LaHood or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. While the number of distracted big-rig crashes may have declined slightly last year, the number of fatal bus accidents actually increased from 20 in 2008 to 38 in 2009.

The National Transportation Safety Board reports that of all bus crashes, somewhere between six and thirteen percent can be attributed to a distracted driver. LaHood's proposal will have to endure a 60-day comment period before being finalized.

[Source: Reuters via MSNBC]