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The U.S. DOT Addresses Distracted Driving Problems From Mobile Devices

Posted by Gary Brod | Dec 16, 2016 | 0 Comments

United States highway deaths last year increased to 35,092, the highest one-year increase since 1966. At least 3500 of those were caused by distractions. How do Federal officials want to address this problem? Back in 2013, the NHTSA guidelines were about limiting the amount of interactions needed to complete an action—think touching a programmed favorite button rather than dialing a phone number For instance, you wouldn't be able to playback video, display “certain graphical or photographic images,” scroll through long amounts of text, or do manual text entry. The guidelines, which are part of a Phase 2 for NHTSA proposals, follow guidelines outlined for infotainment systems (your car's actual console) from 2013.

Last year, 10 percent of traffic fatalities involved one or more distracted drivers, resulting in an 8.8 percent increase from distracted-related fatalities a year earlier, the transportation department said Wednesday.

“The problem of distracted driving has grown into an epidemic. These guidelines could help stem the increase in traffic deaths that we've seen in the last two years,” said William Wallace, policy analyst for Consumers Union, the policy arm of Consumer Reports. “There also needs to be a much broader effort with everyone -- automakers, tech companies, regulators, and consumers -- playing a role.”

Voluntary Guidelines Released By Fed For Smartphone Manufacturers To Block Drivers Use While Driving

Now, they want smartphone makers to block motorists from using certain apps while driving said Todd Shields and Alan Levin from Bloomberg.com. Voluntary guidelines were released On November 23, 2016 by NHTSA calling on phone manufacturers to build new features that would stop drivers from watching video or entering text while behind the wheel of a moving vehicle. Officials said one way to do this would be to create a "driver mode" for phones connected to vehicles that activates when a vehicle's transmission shifts from "park" to "drive"."NHTSA has long encouraged drivers to put down their phones and other devices, and just drive," said NHTSA Administrator Dr. Mark Rosekind. "With driver distraction one of the factors behind the rise of traffic fatalities, we are committed to working with the industry to ensure that mobile devices are designed to keep drivers' eyes where they belong — on the road." The agency is seeking public comments on its proposed guidelines.

NHTSA continues to urge the driving public to take the following safety precautions to minimize distraction while driving:

  • Be a safe, distraction-free driver, put your cell phone down and focus on the road;
  • When using electronic devices for directions, set the destination prior to driving;
  • Speak up when you're a passenger and your driver uses an electronic device while driving. Offer to call or text for the driver, so his or her full attention stays on the driving task; and
  • Always wear your seat belt. Seat belts are the best defense against other unsafe drivers

You can submit written comments at Regulations.gov

If you or a loved one has been injured by a distracted driver, the Brod Law Firm is here to help. Gary Brod, distracted driving accident attorney is dedicated to giving you the best possible results. Contact The Brod Law Firm online or call 1-888-435-7946 (888-HELPWIN) for a free consultation. We serve all of the state of Pennsylvania from our offices in Philadelphia, Reading and Bala Cynwyd.

About the Author

Gary Brod

Attorney Gary Brod is the founder of The Brod Law Firm. For more than three decades, he has relentlessly championed the rights of injured people to receive just compensation for their serious injuries. In recognition of his hard work, dedication to his clients and results obtained on their behalf Gary Brod has received national acclaim for his achievements by leading lawyer and consumer rating organizations for the highest ratings possible by both peers and clients.

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