Target: The United States Congress
Goal: Ban cellphone use while driving
With more than a fifth of automobile accidents resulting from the use of handheld devices while driving, action needs to be taken to limit cellphone use when behind the wheel. Although statistics show that driving while using a cellphone is extremely dangerous, many states have yet to take action to restrict the use of handheld devices while driving. Demand Congress take action to implement a law prohibiting the use of cellphones behind the wheel to promote driver safety.
According to the National Safety Council, 21 percent of all automobile accidents occur due to the use of either a handheld or hands-free device. This is likely because, as studies have shown, the number one source of driver inattention is the use of a mobile device. The risk of harm from someone distracted by their cellphone while driving is likely higher than most people believe; studies show that at any moment during the day, 800,000 people in the U.S. are using cellphones while driving.
While many people might think that using a hands-free device behind the wheel is safer, studies have shown there is no discernible difference. In fact, the University of Utah has concluded that using a cellphone through either a handheld or hands- free medium extends one’s reaction time to the same amount as if you were driving legally drunk. It only makes sense to prohibit the use of mobile devices while driving on the basis of increased danger if we also prohibit driving drunk for the same reason and extent.
Whether one believes that he is responsible or skilled enough at driving to use his cellphone does not change the fact that both novice and experienced drivers are both just as likely to get into an accident when using their mobile device. Four times as likely, to be exact. Using a cellphone while driving reduces your brain’s concentration on the road by 37 percent, according to Carnegie Melon.
By signing the petition below, you will help encourage the United States Congress to implement a law prohibiting the use of cellphones while driving. By not doing so, we are putting ourselves and everyone around us in unnecessary danger.
Dear members of Congress,
Despite the fact that using a cellphone while behind the wheel has been proven to be extremely dangerous, many states do not prohibit the use of a mobile device while driving. Considering that more than a fifth of vehicular accidents are resultant from the use of cellphones while driving, immediate action is needed. Promote driver safety by implementing a law prohibiting the use of cellphones behind the wheel.
The National Safety Council reports that 21 percent of automobile accidents occur because of the use of either a handheld or hands-free device. The University of Utah conducted research that showed that using a cellphone, whether through a hands-free or hand-held medium, extends one’s reaction time to the equivalent of driving legally drunk. Since we prohibit driving drunk due to the increased risk of accidents, it is only logical to do the same with driving while using a mobile device. Experience has also been proven to have no discernible effect; both novice and experienced drivers were four times as likely to get into an accident while using a cellphone.
Please take action to implement a law prohibiting the use of cellphones while driving. Without such regulations, we are being put needlessly in danger.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Chris Yarzab via Flickr