Bicycle Diaries: Driven to distraction

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Driven to distraction

Slate has more on the Feds' refusal to pursue research on the cellphone use of cagers. It goes one step further by exploring possible ways federal agencies have suggested to prevent driving and dialing. They range from the obvious - Stop the vehicle in a safe location that is off the road, well away from traffic, before they receive or place their calls - to the doubtful - Allow a passenger to receive or place calls. How many cagers actually have passengers? And if they do, isn't someone else yacking away next to you just as distracting?

Two other suggestions seem to be equally obtuse.
Mass transit. The most efficient way to let people yap while traveling is to pack them in a vehicle with a single designated driver. That's called public transportation. Transit agencies should take steps to facilitate passenger phone use, such as improving underground transmission. If noise is a problem, agencies can restrict phone use to texting. The important thing is to get phone users out of their cars.
As a frequent mass transit user, I can easily imagine how wonderful it would be surrounded by even more loud cellphone user.
Software. ...some automakers now include a lockout feature to keep drivers from performing complicated tasks—like entering destinations into a car's navigation system—while the vehicle is moving. Maybe phones could be similarly disabled by integrating them with car software.
Don't even get me going on the American obsession with tech fixes; especially when a rather obvious solution already exists. In fact, it's one that goes all the way back to the invention of the telephone. Answering a phone is completely voluntary.When it rings, pings, or plays your favorite iTune you are under no obligation to respond. Isn't that why voice-mail was introduced in the first place???

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