Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Distracted Driver Danger

Yet more disturbing news about the habits of motorists.

State Farm Insurance did a survey of 912 licensed drivers, and got these responses:
- 74% make or receive phone calls at least once weekly while driving
- 35% send or receive text messages weekly while driving
- 19% surf the web (!!) weekly while driving

So... is that a problem?

In 2009, distracted driving accidents resulted in 5,474 deaths and 448,000 injuries.

Yeah, I'd say it's a problem.

Politically, I'm libertarian/conservative, and resent government meddling in people's lives. HOWEVER... since the government provides roads, and since people apparently won't voluntarily refrain from endangering other citizens while using those roads, I think it's up to the government to mandate some responsible behavior. If those 5,474 deaths and 448,000 injuries were only the folks who engaged in grossly irresponsible behavior, then I'd be fully in favor of letting people surf/text/yack away, and deal with the consequences.

(People who have read the BikeNazi for awhile probably think I harp on this too much. May be. But my biggest concern, when I take to the streets on my bicycle, is that I will become a statistic - a victim of some clown who's not paying attention to his/her driving, and plows into me.)

More info about the State Farm survey HERE. (Previous Commentary)

1 comment:

Clancy said...

Our legislature is condoning this action with recent legislation. "it is okay to text as long as it is not distracting".

My fear the only time that law will be enforced, will be in an accident much like a "3 foot to pass" law.