EFI Global

More Sweeping Cellphone Laws Reduce Crash Rates

 Tuesday, August 9, 2022

 IIHS

It’s common knowledge that texting while driving is illegal in most places. But what about tapping the screen of your cellphone to accept a faster route suggested by Google Maps?

What if your phone is mounted on the dashboard? What if you’re stopped at a red light? Is tapping the screen of your phone different from tapping your car’s touch-screen infotainment center?

Drivers have varied interpretations of what is acceptable -- and so do state laws and the police who enforce them.

‘Technology is moving much faster than the laws,’ says Ian Reagan, a senior research scientist at the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. ‘One solution may be to make them broader, rather than trying to come up with an exhaustive list of banned behaviors.’

Cellphones present one of the thorniest problems. Once simple communication devices, they’re now cameras, GPS navigators, web browsers, game consoles, diet trackers, payment portals, stock-trading platforms, social media spaces and more.
AutoLegislation & Regulation
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