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New California cell phone law combats distracted driving

In our last post, we mentioned the new law regarding cell phone use while driving. California already had strict laws about texting or using your phone will driving, but the new law expands the cell phone ban.

With the new regulations, phones must be mounted to the dashboard or windshield, and drivers can only use a finger to tap or swipe the screen. The goal is to allow drivers to use their phone as a GPS device, an especially valuable tool for drivers for companies like Uber and Lyft, while lessening distractions.

This law should help combat distracted driving, and hopefully lead to fewer traffic accidents.

The numbers regarding distracted driving are staggering. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration showcases statistics on distraction.gov, a website built to show people the dangers of distracted driving. 

A few of the numbers:

  • 3,179 people were killed and 431,000 people were injured in distracted driving accidents in 2014.
  • 10 percent of drivers age 15 to 19 involved in accidents were distracted at the time.
  • It's estimated that at any given moment 660,000 people across the country are using their cell phone while driving.
  • It takes an average of five second to send a text message, which is the equivalent of driving the length of a football field while blindfolded. 

While text messaging isn't the only cause of distracted driving, it is one of the biggest. We've all seen someone on their phone in another vehicle, and, if we're being completely honest, many of us have used our phone while driving ourselves.

There's no question that distracted driving is dangerous. Finding ways to keep people off their phones can lower the risk of car accidents for all drivers. 

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