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January 26, 2010

Comments

I absolutely agree with the policy of prohibiting drivers of commercial trucks and buses from texting while driving. This needs to be expanded to include the use of any hand-held device.

In addition, auto manufacturers are busy introducing features that would allow video content to be displayed on color monitors built into the dashboard and visible by drivers. Sales of these vehicles should be outright banned. I do not want to be driving anywhere near someone who is watching TV.

i understand the need to prevent texting and driving out on the road and I completely agree. However why are just commercial drivers being targeted in this manner. It should be anyone operating a motor vehicle. I am a commercial driver and I never use my phone while driving. But I have seen lots of motorist using cell phones without hands free devices or texting and yet they are still allowed to continue these practices. In my opinion, targeting one class of driver is not going to get the point across you need to broaden your scope for this to be successful.

why can't someone come up with a devise that will interfere with a cell-phone when the car is running or moving eg.engine,tran,or driveshaft, so you can't use your phone?

Texting should be outlawed period. Whether the driver is driving a big rig, a bus or a family car, the hazards are the same. It takes but a fraction of a second for an accident to occur.

Congratulations for taking these important steps, and, please, keep up the effort, especially since resistance and indifference from drivers will be great. After all, the majority of drivers believe they can text without endangering themselves or others. So why should they be scapegoated and penalized? Just goes to show that any behavior can be rationalized.

joem

Once again focus on the commercial drivers and ignore the biggest problem those who drive cars. I don't see truck drivers and bus drivers on the phone or texting in the amount of numbers I see the man or woman driving the car or SUV next to or passing me. But of course I guess picking on the truckers and bus drivers makes it look like the government is doing something.

When did the policy and or regulation go into effective regarding prohibiting commericial drivers from texting. I would like to know what the effective date was and a policy or FR number to refer to. Thank you

Mr LaHood,

This should apply to ALL DRIVERS of ALL MOTOR VEHICLES, not just trucks and buses. Cars are lethal weapons just the same. Stop and think for a moment; we have 16+ year old, new, inexperienced drivers motoring on our streets and highways looking down, for as long ast 4-5 seconds at a time as they text message their friends. Studies have shown this is enough time for a vehicle to travel the length of a football field at normal highway speeds, with virtually no one at the wheel!

You can talk the talk about livable communities, active transportation, alternative modes, but few I know are willing to venture near any road on foot or bicycle with this going on. Until this issue is addressed on a national level, with consequences at least on par with Utah, you will be seen as either paid for by the wireless industry, naive, or willfully ignorant.

Almost everyone I know these days has either been rear-ended or knows someone who has. Please put an stop to this madness and enact serious legislation against distracted driving among all vehicle operators!

Very sincerely,

Frank Warnock
President,
Bike Delaware
http://www.bikede.org/

This is long overdo. Now if we can get a law passed that will ban cell phone use while driving for ALL drivers. Then we have to figure how to enforce it. We can't rely on the self discipline of those that are addicted to cell phones to obey and there are not enough police officers on the roads to enforce this adequately.

Is this ban on texting and handheld use going to be enforced as a primary or secondary offense by the police? I've looked around online and read the regulatory guidance PDF about the ban, but nothing seems to mention how this is going to be handled by the cops.

Same fine for comercial vechile should apply to cars! Because cars cause the same dangers to all motorist. I see more cars cutting off other vechile's and causeing accidents! Comercial vechile's always pay higher fines than cars when they are talking on phone or reading or putting on makeup or eating.

Ray needs to spend 11 hours in the cab with an over-the-road trucker. He will see that the issue is NOT with commercial vehicle operators texting while driving. The issue is with average, everyday drivers who are not only texting, but eating with one hand while applying their make-up with the other, fiddling with the stereo, looking over the back of the seat to yell at their kids, and so on, and so on and so on. I think any honest study will show that more drivers kill themselves (and their passengers) while texting and driving than do commercial motor vehicle operators who text and drive. I don't condone it, but the law is extremely one-sided and will do little to reduce the overall accident rate for commercial vehicles. I have a seat available in my truck, Ray. Want to come along for a ride?

I live in Southern California and have experienced many near misses by distracted drivers who were either texting or talking on a cell phone. I really do fear for my life due to everyone's mobile phone addiction. Please, please enforce a nationwide ban FOR ALL VEHICLES and invoke huge fines for breaking the law. It's got to stop! I now put my purse & iPhone in the back seat so I won't be distracted. Even though CA passed a ban on cell phone use I still see people talk/text on their phones all the time while driving. There needs to be huge fines attached to breaking this law. All of our lives are at stake. Thank you!

Well I totally agree that texting is dangerous while driving is it less dangerous in a CAR or PU truck.I think not.You talk about driving distractions everything in a auto or truck is distracting passengers cell phones makeup newspapers etc.So why is all this stuff allowed in vehicles.Well its quite simple the masses would go stark raving mad if they just had to sit and drive.So unfortunately this is just another lip service law aimed at the almighty dollar and the way to keep our government running.Thank You once again.

This is a very important step to make the roads safer for everyone. Texting and talking on a cell phone should not be done by a bus or truck driver. I know some OCTA drivers both fixed route bus drivers and paratransit drivers and supervisors who did this. But now each fixed route bus and paratransit bus has cameras and microphones on them, so the drivers don't text or talk on thephone any more. Putting in cameras is probably something that needs to be done on inter-city trucks and buses to make the new regulations work. Best wishes, Michael E. Bailey.

I know I sound like a Luddite, but the only way to stop the horrific loss of life caused by texting is to ELIMINATE the CAPABILITY of devices to send or receive these messages, period. a BAN will be largely IGNORED.

sorry EVERYONE UNDER 25!
DBLANE

Texting is a problem, but the trucking industry is not the only sector of people who are doing it! All drivers are texting while driving, and ALL DRIVERS need to stop, not just commercial drivers! What is unsafe for one is unsafe for all. Laws are not being addressed where they need to be, the laws are reactive, not proactive and are being unfairly used, especially when it comes to commercial drivers!

I can't thank you enough for taking this on as a major initiative. The fact that NPR has had two stories two days in a row on you and this most passionate mission gives me hope.

As an urbanite who has lived car free for the better part of 15 years I've witnessed it all more abstractly and now do my best to travel via methods other than roads whenever possible. Yet being a pedestrian in New York and Philadelphia one is all the more vulnerable. People talk and text turning corners into crosswalks daily. Unlike cars, we mere mortals have no armor for protection.

Best wishes with your campaign.

This is a terrific move and long over due. My firm GabJam has been working on a devise that will prevent texting and cell phone use in commecial vehicles. We also attended the summit in September. Out technology has been submitted for patent and we hope to commercalize it soon with funding.

Dear Secretary LaHood,

In addition to the comment I just left, I wanted to leave a note to tell you that if there's anything I can do professionally to assist in the effort I would be honored. I'm an advertising creative with 30+ years in the business who also happens to run what was for a time a very popular political t-shirt company: http://progresswear.com

From Michael Moore to Howard Dean, we were lauded for our pithy slogans and clean messaging. The venture is on a back burner and in need of an update, but we are in the process of taking down the overtly political Bush era messages to be replaced with positive social messages. I sort of consider it my own personal Ad Council. My buyers walk the streets as human sandwich boards, and a single wearer on one day ensures that my quips are read by thousands.

Cell phone issues, especially distracted driving are close to my heart having lost two friends of friends to cell phone drivers, one happened to be pregnant. I would be most interested in assisting you and your affiliated partners in this mission via messaging for t-shirts and bumper stickers and other methods by which the public who doesn't listen to NPR or read the New York Times might be reached.

At 52 I've lived through Smoky the Bear, the crying indian and Lady Bird Johnson's environmental campaigns, the seat belt movement, MADD. The same success can occur with this issue, perhaps even more quickly with the assistance of the net. At the same time, Ad Council spots and general PSAs run at a fraction of the frequency they did in my youth and the competition for attention is fierce.

Powerful creative is essential. Whether pro-bono consulting, the coining of the perfect phrases to disseminate or the opportunity to save you folks a few thousand on New York creative it would be an honor to be a part of your most noble and needed initiative.

Sincerely,

Patrick King
patrick@kinggroupmedia.com
http://kinggroupmedia.com
http://progresswear.com

So would 'voice to text" technology be ok to use since you don't have to take you eyes off the road? Does it apply to all devices in the cab such as EOBR's? if not, is a phone an eobr when it is cradled on the dash? Is an EOBR a phone if it has voice capabilities?

Bravo to Secretary LaHood for tackling important, life-affecting issues.

I think that will improve the safety on highways. It is very dangerous to text while you are driving. While sending text messages driver can not focus on road and it may result in an accident. This effort going to make our roads safer.

I really fail to understand the thoughts of your office and that of the dot....While I don't text I have had so many close close with people texting or using their cell phones...In your thoughts maybe your thoughts would have made against the law for all...As 70 percent of accidants are caused by the non commerical community

While I am all for the idea of a nationwide ban on texting while driving, I think it is only fair that this ban should be in effect for ALL motorists, not just commercial vehicles and buses. The penalties should be the same as well. I am an over the road truck driver and during my 11 allotted hours of driving time I can count at least 30 drivers of passenger vehicles PER DAY texting on the road compared to maybe 5 or 6 truck drivers per day. In major cities, that number is nearly triple! These motorists are just as dangerous as they could suddenly slow down dramatically or swerve in front of another vehicle and cause a serious accident, especially if they do so in the path of an 80,000 lb. commercial vehicle. I have had several close calls myself, and it's frustrating that the only thing being done about it is only at the state level (and very few states at that), with small fines compared to the national ban for truckers and bus drivers. It's not fair to us and it's not fair to the rest of the motoring public. All I am asking is that this be revised to include ALL motorists with the same penalties if you are truly serious about taking a stand on distracted driving. Thank you.

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