Using Cell Phone While Driving

So for those who follow my Twitter or Facebook status, you might’ve seen that I posed the question:

Do you think most cell phone car accidents are caused by talking on the phone OR trying to type/read text or enter a phone number?

This all started awhile back when I read this comic strip from Real Life Comics:

Cell Phones
Cell Phones

This got me thinking… does the hands-free cell phone law make sense? What exactly causes cell phone car accidents? Talking on the phone? Holding your phone while talking? None of those sounded quite right.

I sent the following email to Greg as I’ve indicated what I believe is really the culprit to cell phone car accidents:

Hi Greg,

Long time reader, first time emailing you. I read your comic strip about talking on the cell phone while driving awhile back and read the follow-up rant today, and just wanted to share with you my opinion.

Honestly, banning talking on the cell phone or holding a cell phone while driving are both illogical. Talking on the cell phone is not that much different than having a conversation with someone else in the car. Having a conversation in person or over the cell phone can be distracting, but learning to deal with that is just part of driving.

And like many, I personally drive most of the time with 1 hand anyway, so I agree that the hands-free cell phone law doesn’t quite make sense.

What I’m getting at is the law shouldn’t be about hands-free, it should be eyes-free. I could totally be wrong about this, but I think the reason why there are so many cell phone related car accidents is because people are taking their eyes off the road. This could be because they’re typing in a phone number or trying to search for someone in their address book. Worse, there are people who actually text while driving. A friend just brought up the fact that you can now surf the web while driving. Every driver knows that taking their eyes off the road is very dangerous. Just imagine the time when you’re trying to reach for something that you have to look away for just a few seconds.

One Reply to “Using Cell Phone While Driving”

  1. I feel that just the mere fact that you are talking on the cell phone is distracting. Talking on the cell is not the same as talking to someone in the same car as you. Often times, when I am driving, the ones who drive very slowly and dangerously are usually cell phone drivers (as well as a few other stereotypical genre of people that I will not mention cause it isn’t PC). However, I never notice people who are driving in the car with other people drive as dangerously as cell phone drivers.

    On a very biased observation that I have made, my attention drops very low when I am talking on a hands-free device than if I have a full car and we are all yelling at each other. I have yet to fathom why that is, but it is an observation that I have personally made.

    Also, I feel that the “hand on the cell phone” is also a culprit of bad driving. I see it all the time when I stop at a red light and I see people turning the steering wheel more than 180 degrees with 1 hand when making a left turn.

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