CRAVE Research Five

Conan, Neal, host. What’d Make You Stop Texting and Driving? N.d. Talk of the Nation. NPR, 07 June 2012. Web. 25 Mar. 2013. <http://www.npr.org/2012/06/07/154519836/whatd-make-you-stop-texting-while-driving>.

Neal Conan hosts a radio show for National Public Radio in which he discusses the problem of driving while using a cell phone and other distracted driving habits. Conan explores the topic and possible solutions by referencing various studies and statistics, explaining recent legislation that affects the issue, reading the comments and concerns of people who wrote in, and interviewing callers live. The author, in examining the issue, is both trying to get people involved, as well as find potential solutions that our government could possibly institute. The previous source indicated that the leading cause of accidents was driver error, which is greatly increased with distractions. While cellphones are only one sort of distraction, the preventative principles discussed here can be applied to other dangerous behavior.

I am very interested in this article because it applies so much to me, as well as everyone in general. It is almost guaranteed that the legal status and technology options for cell phones will change in the next ten or even five years. I’m not sure which methods I like more: the technological ones or the legislative ones. For instance, similar to the option that was discussed of a lock on cellphones when in the car, I’ve driven in a car with a radio that is inoperable when the vehicle is moving. This was incredibly annoying as I was merely the passenger, and it was entirely possible for me to adjust it while the driver maintained his concentration. The car would sound a reminder to buckle your seatbelt if you were in the passenger seat, showing that the car obviously already has a method of determining if there was a passenger. Why hadn’t the engineers thought to allow the radio to be operated in this case! I think this would be an issue for any sort of safety device or restrictive technology put into cars. People would hate it, and would oppose wherever they could, even if it made them safer, just because it is too obnoxious. That is where fines and the other options have benefits. But the technologies are fail proof, while enforcement is not omnipotent. I think the best thing would be a technology that is unobtrusive without drawbacks that would always work to prevent distractions. Unfortunately, people often find these distractions fun or necessary.

 

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