About the author

Myron Levin is editor of FairWarning.

8 comments to “Lobbyists Target Distracted Driving Campaigns by Oprah, Ray LaHood”

  1. Todd

    You want to save lives do you? There are 40,000 traffic fatalities in this country every year. 17,000 of them are kids. Want to save lives? STOP DRIVING SO DAMN MUCH!
    Meanwhile, you’re all trying to ban guns and put fences around your swimming pools and ban playground equipment and ban flavored cigarettes when the most dangerous thing you’ll ever do to your kid is put them in the car with you. But we wouldn’t want to give up convenience just because it’s the most probable cause of death, now would we?

  2. Kevin B

    “Similar pilot programs on drunk driving and seat belts ultimately became federal mandates, where government dictates behavior behind the wheel,” the document warns.

    Wow! In their own words! How awful that government mandated that people wear seat belts and NOT drive while intoxicated!

    I’m all for personal freedom, but common sense must also play a role. Getting behind the wheel of a 2,500+ vehicle and driving in traffic and near pedestrians at relatively high speeds demands our full attention. If evidence shows that distracted driving impairs a driver’s attention, then common sense dictates that safety wins out over someone’s sense of “personal freedom.” Besides, I seriously doubt that “billions of dollars” are at stake here in lost revenue.

  3. 0101101

    I see no evidence that talking on a phone – hands-free or otherwise – is more distracting than tuning the radio, dealing with kids in the back seat, applying make up, looking at a map or GPS, eating, talking with a passenger….. etc. A phone is just one more thing. The nature of the distraction is irrelevant. Drivers should be attentive to driving.
    Outlawing use of a phone is an attempt to be proactive, but it’s not the public’s duty to prevent all accidents – it’s the duty of the driver. Any assertion that, ‘if one life is saved, it’s worth it’ isn’t just wrong, it’s absurd.

  4. driving anxiety

    While we’re dabbling in the area of Lobbyists Target Distracted Driving Campaigns by Oprah, Ray LaHood | FairWarning, You must have heard about people being scared of driving. This is a common condition caused by driving fear that eventually leads to driving anxiety.

  5. Jim Hoffman

    As a cyclist, distracted drivers are a threat to my life, liberty and pursuit of happiness. I also know of two cyclists killed by distracted drivers. Neither of these drivers were ever charged with a crime, not even a ticket. Hang up and drive.

  6. Jake

    I’m also in support for better driver education on the risks of texting/using a mobile device while driving. Let’s not kid ourselves into thinking that these mobile devices are a fad- their popularity and proliference are increasing daily, and we need to teach younger drivers especially how to drive safely with these devices in their cars. If regulators didn’t think cell phones and mobile technology are going to be around for awhile and permanently influence our driving, we wouldn’t even be seeing a conversation on the issue, considering all the other things (eat, read, apply make-up) we see people do every day while they drive.

    Also, something many people don’t know because of how the media frames this issue as hands free vs. standard use– several studies have shown no significant difference between driver distractedness when using a hands free device vs. a standard mobile phone. BOTH significantly influence driver distractedness but neither has a greater significant detremental effect than the other.

  7. Lobbyists Try to Reframe Distracted Driving Issue - Wheels Blog - NYTimes.com

    […] lobbying firm, the Seward Square Group, has fueled the tension. The document, a copy of which was posted by the Web site FairWarning, says the distracted driving issue has been “hijacked” by national transportation authorities […]

  8. Lisa Stoehr

    I am all for driver responsibility and vehicle education. If people can see what can happen (on a simulator, driving a course, picturs of vehicular accidents caused by texting, etc) when texting and driving, that should change their ways, hopefully

    I will be keeping an eye on what happens in the future regarding this subject..

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