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  1. #1
    Registered Tycho's Avatar
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    Aug 2001
    San Diego, CA
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    Should you be able to use Cell Phones while driving?

    Well, this topic is about whether you should be able to use Cell Phones while driving.

    I'm not sure I've taken a position on this yet.

    I do use mine, and I'd probably use mine out of habit no matter where the law stands.

    A cop has to see you to get a ticket, were it made to be against the law.

    Hands free devices, voice activated systems, and a lot of other options make it possible for the issue to be more clouded.

    Anyway, what do you think.
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  2. #2
    I'm guilty of talking on mine when I'm driving, but I take extra care when I'm doing so. I think most people who are going to be hazards when on a cell phone would be dangerous when eating, drinking, talking, or whatever else in the car. It's the distracted driver, not the distraction that's the real danger.
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  3. #3
    Years ago when I drove buses for a living I had my first exposure to driving and talking. The radios that the vehicles were equiped with used a conventional handset that you would see with your standard home phone. As you drove you frequently had to answer radio calls or make some using the radio/phone. It was quite alarming how much you would miss as you talked, no matter how short the conversation. After hanging up I would not be able to recall the last few city blocks. Did I pass a stop? Did I run a red light? Did I cut someone off?

    Well after my paranoia grew I did my best to only talk while stopped or only on deserted roads with requiring no navigation and with no, or very little traffic.

    Forward 5 years now and everyone has cell phones and I'm trying to follow the same rules. I try to only talk while sitting still or while on empty high volume roads (ie turnpikes or interstates). The cell phone explosion happened after I left my bus driving company but I know of at least one large accident there that had be caused by the driver being distracted by a cell phone conversation.

    I think we've all been cut off by a cell phone talker or watched a driver appear to be drunk as they wander across lanes of traffic or accelerate/decelerate haphazardly but to only find out that they are talking on a cell phone.

    Talking while driving is a known distraction that has caused problems in the past and will only get worse as more and more people get them. It's strange that when you talk to someone in your car you don't experience the same level of distraction as talking on a cell phone. It must me something about concentrating on listening through a small speaker and talking into a microphone.

    I do admit to breaking my own rules and answering a call at times when I should probably concentrate on the road ahead. I'm not proud of it but I do try to not talk while driving. I've tried headsets while driving without much luck. I think it was less distracting but the quality really suffered. The other person had to constantly ask me to repeat myself or speak more clearly. Perhaps as technology improves drivers can drop the need to hold a phone and do more hands off.

    Legally I don't want to see it be made illegal to talk while driving. I think there are some situations that are relatively safe to talk while driving. I wouldn't mind giving police the authority to ticket those dangerous drivers that are swerving across 2 lanes as they talk. If someones cell phone talking is posing a safety risk then ticket them. But it would also require the police to issue "acceptible" car talking rules. Perhaps requiring a headset or some sort of other device.
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  4. #4
    I was as guilty as you guys for using it while driving and I found it took a great deal of concentration to do so and I always worried about how I would react if I had to brake or swerve suddenly.

    Now I use my hands-free headset, I find it so much easier now. I think it's as dangerous as talking to someone in the car with you now.

    That plus it looks like you're talking to yourself, I like freaking out the other drivers that way
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  5. #5
    You are stupid if you talk and drive using a handheld. Just plain dumb. I ride my bike an awful lot, and I can't count how many times I've been nearly hit and the person was on the damn phone. It seems once you've committed to a maneuver, it's very hard to correct that (such as stopping fast or avoiding a sudden obstacle). I've also noticed a correlation between people on phones driving large, inefficient vehicles. And it makes sense to me, because it seems that the people who do these things have a general disdain and uncaring attitude to the general population (themselves included).

    In terms of the law, I think it's all or nothing. You can't have "safe situations" where you're able to use handsets because driving is an intrinsically fluid situation, changing from moment to moment, whether you are actually moving or not. You should be fully alert and prepared to react at ALL times. While they're at it, they should outlaw driving with ANY sort of distraction. And the public should be able to report offenders.

    Also stupid to do while driving (that I've witnessed): eating, reading, applying makeup, changing CDs, berating your children, etc.
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  6. #6
    scruffziller's Avatar
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    Apr 2002
    The frozen tundra of Scandinavia
    I say as long as you have your headset on.
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  7. #7
    Here in Cali, the DMV should have a special test and license for phone-qualified drivers - it would increase revenues and start weeding out the chumps who are concentrating on their call rather than their driving (hands-free or not).

    Since drivers are not supposed to be driving with only 1 hand, cellphone use while driving is already disallowed technically, but I've never heard of a cop enforcing that.
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  8. #8
    bobafrett's Avatar
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    Dec 2002
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    Well, seeing as I'm in my car quite a lot as I deliver pizza to make extra money, I am against driving while talking on a Cell phone. I have seen people talking, and they half stop at stop signs, don't even look to make sure the intersection is clear before driving on through. There fae remains looking straight ahead, and the only thing moving is the person lips. I would benefit from having a cell phone as there are times where I need to call the customer because they need to meet me in the lobby or they don't here me knocking. But, I would rather due without, and hopefully they will ban cell phones from being used while driving. We drove all those years before without them, why not now?
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  9. #9
    Banned stillakid's Avatar
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    Aug 2001
    Los Angeles
    If I recall the recent study about this topic, it was actually found that more accidents are caused by people eating in their cars than anything else. In fact, I don't think that talking on the phone was any higher than #5 on the list. So if safety is really the issue, I would expect to see a ban on food consumption while in the driver's seat before any legislation passes on cel phones. But, as we all know, laws are frequently made for alterior motives, so I'm sure that we'll be able to enjoy our Taco Bell at 70mph long after the cel phones are forced into the glove compartment.

  10. #10
    bobafrett's Avatar
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    Dec 2002
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    I did see a guy once weaving back and fourth. I thought he was drunk, but when I pulled up next to him at the light, I glanced over and noticed he was eating with his head down not looking at the light or anything. It's true, there are many distractions while driving, from kids screaming, to people putting on make up or shaving, to reaching down to change a CD or cassette. I even had my first girlfriend looking me eye to eye, while I was driving, while it was exciting, her head blocked the view of anything going on directly in front of me.
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