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Distracted drivers

I see this more and more...people distracted by their phones while driving. Either talking on their phones or worse, texting. In most jurisdictions this is illegal and for good reason...people should be concentrated on driving, not their phones. When I am stopped at a stop light all I see are a bunch of heads in the other cars bobbing up and down looking at their phones and checking to see if the light is green yet. I call this the "texting nod". And to top it off now many of the new cars come with screens for GPS or consoles to organize your music or manage other aspects of your driving comfort. Again, what are you doing watching these various screens? When you are in the car you should be driving! I was never a nervous driver before...but this is quickly changing. As you can tell, this is a pet peeve of mine. Comments welcome.
 
It is a horrible problem. I live in a small town that has a disproportionately high number of stop lights, due to nonexistent planning and poor street layout. It is very common for at least one car, usually more, to run every red light you encounter.
 

Rhody

I'm a Lumberjack.
I agree and seeing people young and old on a cell while driving is a common everyday experience. However I think the problem is larger than that it seems to me that basic rules of the road are not taught anymore or are quickly forgotten if ever taught. Time and again I witness drivers doing the exact opposite to a rule of the road as the maneuver is simply something that's easy or convenient.

But to the point, Isee the trickle down effect all the time. Drivers first or second at a red light are not paying attention. Looking at text. Don't notice the light turn green. Slow to go when the bother to notice. End result I see sometimes only 2 or 3 cars make it thru the green due to this slow process. Then the next drivers feel justified in running a yellow or red light. On the other hand if I honk the horn at a driver still sitting at a green I immediately get their anger.
 

kelbro

Alfred Spatchcock
While developing the next gen Motorola Razor, I submitted a design for keyboard functionality inhibit if the accelerometer detected motion over 1mph. Product group/marketing shot it down.

We could have fixed this safety issue way before smart phones existed.
 
I often wonder what is is they are texting about that is so important. If it was a historical breakthrough discovery in medicine or a declaration of world peace I could understand jeopardizing your life and those around you to send a quick acknowledgement text, but chances they are just saying, "So what are you guys doing today? I'm driving." or "Did you want milk and bread or just bread?" or "Hey, what's up?"
 

Rhody

I'm a Lumberjack.
I often wonder what is is they are texting about that is so important. If it was a historical breakthrough discovery in medicine or a declaration of world peace I could understand jeopardizing your life and those around you to send a quick acknowledgement text, but chances they are just saying, "So what are you guys doing today? I'm driving." or "Did you want milk and bread or just bread?" or "Hey, what's up?"
Check out people holding the phone to their face. Usually they are not saying anything while I observe. To your question. What are people talking about?
I prefer texting to replace long unnecessary telephone calls.
 
I hate distracted drivers. I had to slam on my brakes one time because of a distracted driver and split my beer.

Anyways when I was in Korea they had huge portable GPS's (like 12 inches) and it had built in state sponsored TV and games you could play with other drivers. You could play poker and black jack with other drivers.
 
Texting is the primary activity. The car is secondary to the smart phone.

BTW, in Michigan I think it is a rule to pass on the right.

Soon enough the cars will drive themselves, I guess.
 

Esox

I didnt know
Drivers texting or talking on their cell phones and not paying attention to the road and/or whats around them is one of my biggest buttons.

Here in Ontario it can get very expensive very quickly and can escalate to a license suspension.

Q5: What are the fines / penalties for breaking Ontario's distracted driving law?
As of September 1, 2015 the fines and penalties for distracted driving will increase.

If convicted of distracted driving, a fully licenced driver (holder of Class A, B, C, D, E, F, G) or a hybrid driver (holder of a full-class licence and a novice licence such as Class G and M1) will receive:

  • a fine of $400, plus a victim surcharge and court fee, for a total of $490 if settled out of court
  • fine of up to $1,000 if you receive a summons or fight your ticket
  • three demerit points applied to your driver’s record
If convicted of distracted driving, a novice driver (subject to the Graduated Licensing program) will be subject to escalating sanctions:

  • first occurrence will result in a 30-day licence suspension
  • second occurrence will result in 90-day licence suspension
  • licence cancellation and removal from the Graduated Licensing System for a third occurrence

    Distracted Driving - Frequently Asked Questions
 
Drivers texting or talking on their cell phones and not paying attention to the road and/or whats around them is one of my biggest buttons.

Here in Ontario it can get very expensive very quickly and can escalate to a license suspension.

Q5: What are the fines / penalties for breaking Ontario's distracted driving law?
As of September 1, 2015 the fines and penalties for distracted driving will increase.

If convicted of distracted driving, a fully licenced driver (holder of Class A, B, C, D, E, F, G) or a hybrid driver (holder of a full-class licence and a novice licence such as Class G and M1) will receive:

  • a fine of $400, plus a victim surcharge and court fee, for a total of $490 if settled out of court
  • fine of up to $1,000 if you receive a summons or fight your ticket
  • three demerit points applied to your driver’s record
If convicted of distracted driving, a novice driver (subject to the Graduated Licensing program) will be subject to escalating sanctions:

  • first occurrence will result in a 30-day licence suspension
  • second occurrence will result in 90-day licence suspension
  • licence cancellation and removal from the Graduated Licensing System for a third occurrence

    Distracted Driving - Frequently Asked Questions

I am from Southern Canada.








Syracuse, NY.
 

garyg

B&B membership has its percs
As Kelbro pointed out above, the technology is there to fix it, either within the phone or within the vehicle. But given that those fixes aren't likely to happen, how about making texting or phoning equivalent to drunk driving with respect to penalties? I walk on the local roads an hour or two every day, and observe cell phone violations (if not close calls) every other day at least, while it's been a while since I saw an obvious drunk (granted its daytime).

Real simple - add loss of license and maximal fines to those morons who feel they are so important they need to play with their game boys while piloting a couple tons of steel. But, unfortunately, the population of morons has grown to such an extent that curbing their ways is politically unrealistic ..
 

Esox

I didnt know
It's no surprise that most new cars now come standard with emergency braking and lane-keep assist functions.

Not to mention turn signal indicators in the mirror, beepers to make you look at the instrument cluster if you fail to turn one off, backup cameras ect all getting your attention for a split second, but sometimes, that split second is all that matters.

Far better off teaching people to drive properly, but thats on the agenda less and less these days.
 
I live in Ontario, and Esox posted the fines for texting/distracted driving above. Unfortunately, the laws have had no effect as far as I can tell.

As far as I know, you have to be parked somewhere to text or use any hand held electronic device when you are operating a vehicle. But as soon as cars stop at a red light, the heads go down into the phone in the drivers' laps. Then everyone complains about traffic and congestion during rush hour! Of course the bigger problem is texting while the car is moving. I think (but can't be sure) that most people on the phones are reading and not texting out. I'm pretty sure they are reading their Facebook junk. Can you tell I don't like Facebook? People read their texts, Facebook flapdoodle, and Twitter tripe like rats in an experiment getting a reward. The pleasure centre lights up in the brain when you see a message notification. Driving just isn't interesting enough for most people to ignore those notifications.

I can't even walk down the street without having people with their eyes glued to their screens almost walking into me until they see my feet as they stare down. Then they look up and jump to the side. As you can guess, I feel no need to jump out of their way. I guess ticking them off lights up the pleasure centre in my brain :001_tongu. At walking speed, you can avoid a collision if you are glued to your phone. At highway speeds....
 
I just wish I was one of the inventors of the smart phone. That person (or faceless corporation) is laughing all the way to the bank. Who knew a tiny box of electronics could have such a society changing effect on people's behaviour...good and bad. Don't get me wrong, I am not a Luddite...indeed I rely on computerization and internet for my livelihood. I am more concerned how sensible use has spilled over the precipice into the unhealthy dangerous use territory.
 
One of the golden moments of Mythbusters was proving that any interaction besides hands on wheel, and eyes and ears on the road drastically reduced your ability to react. Be it cellphone or hands free.
You all may be peeved by people on their cellphones, but there's an even larger driving peeve of mine: Drivers with headsets on. Not little ol' earbuds for hands free talking, but the "I'm going to listen to records" gorram headsets.
 
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