When Will Massachusetts Drivers Get It? Calling and Texting While Driving = Disaster

The lunacy of people using their smartphones while they drive, continues unabated. This problem has become far more than a “bad habit” – it’s almost as serious a problem as drunk driving. In fact, it’s very similar: A drunk or drugged driver is mentally, neurologically, and physically impaired. Someone using a smartphone is little different: Their mental acuity is reduced due to their concentrating on whatever phone conversation is taking place, or whatever other function or application they are using on the phone. Neurologically, their response and reaction times are reduced due to their focus being taken off the road, and physically, one hand is almost always either holding the phone or using it in some manner.

Yet, Massachusetts drivers go on with this dangerous, even deadly practice. The law that was passed here a few years ago has barely any enforcement teeth in it at all. Worse, the schizophrenic approach to the statute makes the same activity a crime for a juvenile, but not for an adult. I’ve blogged about this before. Recently, another state is taking some added measures to further penalize this conduct, and I think it makes sense. The Wisconsin state legislature is considering a bill that would prohibit drivers from using their smart phones while in a construction zone. That includes phoning, or texting. The ban would apply when workers are present in construction zones, the focus being protection of road crews. Drivers could still make 911 calls in those zones. Wisconsin law currently bans texting while driving, and bans new drivers who are on a probationary license from making calls on their phones.

As a Boston, Massachusetts cell phone accident lawyer, I think that such a measure should be passed here I Massachusetts. In fact, I think that all smartphone use while driving should be banned entirely, unless the phone call were made to 911, or the text involved an emergency. Unfortunately, I don’t think a near-complete ban on smartphone use in Massachusetts is likely, but it ought to be enacted. When will people “get it,” that driving a ton of steel and glass at speeds over 5 MPH, while talking on a smartphone, texting or searching the internet, is a prescription for disaster? Answer: When they are the ones who are seriously hurt.

How sad. As a Boston car accident lawyer, I see the damage and heartache from this practice, all too often. If people knew how dangerous and foolish this “habit” really is, they’d think twice.