Cell-phone use is risky business for other drivers

What others say

Posted: Tuesday, July 26, 2005

A study reporting that drivers using cell phones are four times more likely to have a wreck probably didn't ring any alarm bells with the people who should have heard about it — cell phone users. ...

Who hasn't almost been sideswiped by someone on a cell phone, trying to punch in the numbers for a call on a cell phone, or taking their eyes off the road while they root around in a purse or the passenger seat for a ringing cell phone? And if we combine the propensity to think our call is just too important to wait with traffic these days, driving while talking is risky business. ...

We've often thought that having a receiver plugged into one's ear can be doubly dangerous. Not only is the driver concentrating on a conversation, he's also partially blocking a major safety factor — his hearing. That means a siren might not get through to his consciousness as quickly as it should and puts not just other drivers at risk but whoever is awaiting the emergency attention the siren indicates. ...

Most calls can wait. Or if it can't, pull out of traffic and do your talking in a parking lot. Not only will you be safer, your fellow travelers will as well.

— Anderson (S.C.) Independent-Mail,

July 17

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