Why is distracted driving so dangerous?
As soon as a driver takes their eyes off the road to check their phone it increases the chance of a car accident dramatically. A drivers inattention to the road and the surrounding cars can lead to disasters and that is why new laws are being created to cut down on texting and driving. Just about 80% of all car crashes in the United States are caused by a distracted driver because dialing a phone number can increase the risk of a crash by 6 times and 23 times by sending a text ("Driving Distracted"). Due to the high percentage of car crashes caused by distracted drivers, it shows how hazardous distracted driving is since many people are injured or even killed in car accidents. Some recent studies have shown that talking on the phone while driving makes the risk of a car crash increase just by talking while holding a phone (Clines). The dangers of distracted driving has lead to new laws being created to put a stricter ban on the use of phones while driving.
What pushed states to want a stricter ban on distracted driving?
When states began to see the increase of car crashes and fatalities on their roads they realized how big of problem distracted driving is. Some states decided to create and enforce new laws that will help prevent the car crashes that are happening on a daily basis. In Florida, fatalities due to car accidents have increased 46% in 2 years and accidents caused by distracting driving rose by 36% between 2012 and 2015 (“Editorial: Give teeth to texting ban”). As the number kept increasing throughout the years they realized that something needs to be done to prevent those fatalities because of car accidents. The United States wants to protect their citizens from danger, so they are hoping to do that by putting a stricter ban on texting while driving. At any given daylight period over 660,000 drivers are on some mobile device while driving and that number is increasing at an alarming pace (Raul). As states begin to crack down on distracted driving by implementing new laws they hope to see a positive effect on drivers.
What will the laws look like in the future?
Lawmakers and activists are wanting to make the laws widespread since most of the laws against texting while driving are just local and not statewide. Improving the laws and expanding them to other states is the main focus for the future. The amount of people who use their phones while driving has increased so much that 6 in 10 people who text and drive today didn’t three years ago and in the next three years that ratio could potentially go up (“Texting While Driving, AT&T”). As the amount of people who text and drive increases, it encourages more laws to come out in the future to completely eliminate texting and driving. The goal of the laws are to eliminate car accidents caused by distracted drivers and their hope is that in the future the laws are obeyed and cut down on the amount of car accidents. The Department of Transportation is trying to push congress into passing texting and driving legislations because they hope it will enforce more people's behaviors to change when it comes to distracted driving. They also want using a phone while driving to be a primary offense since in most places it is a secondary offense so the police can pull you over for just using your phone while driving (“Driving Distracted”). Overall, laws are being enacted to cut down on texting while driving to attempt to prevent further car accidents and reckless driving.