If the Government wont save us from ourselves, who will?

Please save me from myself!!

More and more States are taking legislative action on drivers using hand-held cell phones, presumably because cell phone use is wreaking havoc on our nation’s highways.  We are told how inherently dangerous it is to walk and chew gum drive and talk on a cell phone, and for our own good we must ban the practice.  But, do the statistics bear out the cell phone hysteria?

Of course not!  According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the overall number of motor vehicle accidents (MVAs) has been on a steady decline at the same time the both the number of vehicles on the road and the number of people using cell phones has exploded.

  # of Vehicles # of MVAs # Cell Phones
2000 225,821,241 13.4 M 109,478,031
2004 243,010,549 10.9 M 182,140,362
2005 247,421,120 10.7 M 207,896,198
2006 250,844,644 10.4 M 233,000,000
2007 254,403,081 10.6 M No Stat
2008 255,917,664 10.2 M 262,700,000

If cell phone use while driving was as inherently dangerous as we are told, the numbers ought to reflect a trend of increased MVAs along with the increasing number of cell phone users and vehicles on the road.  Generally speaking, we should expect with the increased number of vehicles and drivers on the road, an increase in MVAs, but the actual number is on the decline.

The State (and soon to be federal government, no doubt) governments have taken it upon themselves to protect the hapless public from themselves.  This is yet another example of politicians pandering to a busy-body voting base by solving problems which do not exist.

Of course we all have anecdotal evidence of the driver who almost killed us while talking obliviously on their phone.  But we can say the same for coffee drinkers, snackers, radio adjusters, rubber-neckers, lost drivers, and a host of other distractions.  Just as when radios were first installed in vehicles, the number of accidents involving radios (and 8-track, cassette, and cd players) increased.  Not because the activity is inherently dangerous, but the activity was never available to distract the driver before.  The same thing happened when cup holders were installed in vehicles, the number of accidents involving beverages (drinking or handling) increased.

So this is another example of a solution in search of a problem.  It appeases white-knuckled paranoid drivers; and at the same time the politicians have essentially used talking drivers as a boogey man in order to generate a little extra cash (to fund programs that secure a different voting block) that should have gone by the wayside decades ago.  It’s a cash grab plain and simple.


  1. Since I don’t believe driving is in any way a fundamental “right,” and since driving entails moving around at dangerously fast speeds in a multi-ton block of metal and gasoline which poses potential (and real world) threats to innocent bystanders, I have no problems whatsoever imposing reasonable rules upon drivers.

    For me, the measure is always, “You have the right to swing your fist all you want, UNTIL it starts being a threat to other people.”

    The whole question here is, “what is a reasonable precaution?” I side towards more caution (more protection for innocent bystanders) in the case of cars.

    • I agree that driving is a privelage and not a right, but it is the false premise that phones are inherently dangerous that offends my sense. Just comea out and say, “we don’t care that they are not more dangerous than eating or drinking, but we want the revenue from fines”. But like Z rightly points out that distractions are a problem, why not ban ALL distractions, eating, drinking, radio, etc.? Why this?? That’s all.

      • “Reasonable precaution,” seems to me to be the goal. IF we can expect something to be a significantly reasonable distraction, we can legitimately regulate drivers, seems to me.

        From a gov’t website on distracted driving…

        There are three main types of distraction:

        Visual — taking your eyes off the road
        Manual — taking your hands off the wheel
        Cognitive — taking your mind off what you’re doing

        Distracted driving is any non-driving activity a person engages in that has the potential to distract him or her from the primary task of driving and increase the risk of crashing.

        While all distractions can endanger drivers’ safety, texting is the most alarming because it involves all three types of distraction.

        This seems to me to reach the level of reasonable precaution. Yes, talking to your passenger might pose a cognitive distraction, and drinking a soda might cause a manual distraction, but cell phone usage involves multiple levels of distraction.

        I’m NOT saying “I don’t care that they’re not more dangerous than eating or drinking.” It seems to many of us (and I believe research supports it) that cell phone usage IS more dangerous than eating or drinking and that is why we can legitimately regulate it.

        Some other research shows…

        * Distracted driving is the number one killer of American teens. Alcohol-related accidents among teens have dropped. But teenage traffic fatalities have remained unchanged, because distracted driving is on the rise.

        * Drivers on mobile phones are more impaired than drivers at .08 BAC.

        * Using cell phones while driving is a very high risk behavior with significant impact on crashes and society. More than 50 peer-reviewed scientific studies have identified the risks associated with cell phone use while driving.

        If research showed that eating or drinking while driving ALSO was a significant risk factor (and maybe it is), then I’d support regulating that, as well.

        • Dan, I am not arguing that phone use is not distracting to some drivers. I am suggesting it is not any more distracting than other permitted behaviors. It is not so dangerous as to warrant prohibitive legislation. Get it?

        • Thank you, Dan, for being the voice of reason.

          You have made a clear illustration that using a cell phone involves multiple levels of distraction. While no one likes to be told what they cannot do, we can all agree that operating a motor vehicle and using a cell phone is dangerous. Dangerous enough to be prohibited? Just think about laws pertaining to the criminalization of driving under the influence or even driving drowsy. I’m sure there were people who still though “Hey, I’ve got a right to do that! Why do you have to make laws against it?”

          If you try to make the claim that our roads today are safe by simply trying to appeal to statistics this way you should probably have your head examined.

          I guess it just comes down to asking yourself how many things you can do at once while you drive. Unfortunately, we don’t often learn from the mistakes of others – we barely learn from our own.

          • Unfortunately, intoxication has shown to impare to the point where an accident is more likely, where phone usage has not. Sorry, you’d have a case if accidents went up not down over the same period that phone usage and motor vehicle usage increased.

        • I am suggesting it is not any more distracting than other permitted behaviors. It is not so dangerous as to warrant prohibitive legislation. Get it?

          I get that YOU are saying that. I don’t get that research supports your hunch that it is not any more distracting. According to the sources I just cited, you’re mistaken on that point.

          I’m no expert and certainly don’t know myself. But it makes intuitive sense to me that cell phone usage is more distracting (and thus, more dangerous, and thus more regulate-able) than eating a burger.

        • John…

          intoxication has shown to impare to the point where an accident is more likely, where phone usage has not.

          Did you see my research I cited?

          * Drivers on mobile phones are more impaired than drivers at .08 BAC.

          BAC. Blood Alcohol Content. ie, Drivers on mobile phones ARE impaired to the point where the likelihood of an accident is increased. Here’s more on that research…

          When drivers were conversing on either a handheld or hands-free cell phone, their braking reactions were delayed and they were involved in more traffic accidents than when they were not conversing on a cell phone.

          By contrast, when drivers were intoxicated from ethanol they exhibited a more aggressive driving style, following closer to the vehicle immediately in front of them and applying more force while braking.

          Conclusion: When driving conditions and time on task were controlled for, the impairments associated with using a cell phone while driving can be as profound as those associated with driving while drunk.


          John, would you like to see similar restrictions placed on driving while eating or drinking a soda, if it were shown to be as impairing as drunk driving or driving while cell phoning?

          • Sure I would, my opinion can be changed. But if I can find the study that showed that talking with passengers is more distracting that talking on a phone, I will discount your study as silly

          • Here you go Dan, from the University of Michigan:

            Click to access rr37_1.pdf

            “researchers have discovered that talking to passengers may be just as dangerous for drivers as talking on a cell phone. A recent study shows that drivers who have conversations with passengers exhibit similar levels of driving performance as motorists who use cell phones. The study found no statistical difference in terms of drivers keeping in the correct lane or in steering behavior when talking on a cell phone or conversing with a passenger.”

            “Eating and drinking had little effect on driving performance, except for modest increases in steering variance and glance frequency”

            So now you want me to believe that talking to a passenger is worse than being drunk? Since talking on a phone is the same as being drunk, right? Sorry, no credibility.

        • Hey John – when is the last time you spoke to anyone on the phone, when deep into the conversation, they suddenly tell you your speeding towards a red light?

          Let’s not be stupid here. You may not like regulation – we get it.
          It just unsafe and you know it. Let’s hope you’re family is not effected by your recklessness.

          Oh, wait, weren’t you the one who was advocating punishment for those who willingly and knowingly harm others?

          • Z, I think it is unsafe for some drivers, not all. I would prefer to see an overarching “distracted driving” law which didnt target certain behaviors premptively, but punished them after the fact. For example, if I got into an accident while on my phone, eating, drinking, etc, I get a ticket for distracted driving, but not before hand presuming I can’t do more than one thing at the same time.

        • Your ego regarding your driving ability precedes you, John – it is unsafe for all drivers.

          The “after the fact” argument is just wrong. The same thought process could be used to justify any dangerous behavior. Driving under the influence, speeding, highway racing… don’t enforce any of them until there’s an incident? I’d like to see what your attitude reflects when your own children are old enough to drive.

  2. For starters, your statistics are skewed and misleading. In 2008, there may have been 262 million cell phones, but there were only 208 million licensed drivers. While cars may have become safer over the years, drivers have not. Distractions are an issue, especially ones that use the same mental faculties that are involved in decision-making in order to drive safely. We are fooling ourselves if we think we can multitask like that without endangering everyone around us.

    Interesting tangent you pick by making an argument about trying to generate money, as it’s clear that the telecommunications lobby has a greater vested interest in making sure that no laws get passed prohibiting the use of their products.

    Instead of worrying about corporate interests, I think you should be more concerned about your own financial and civil liability if a lawsuit arises from a crash as a result of negligent driving behavior.

    • The argument that cars are safer but drivers are not does not hold. The overall number of actual accidents have been on the decline, not just by proportion, even though the number of cars, drivers, and cell phone users have increased. So if drivers were even exactly as unsafe now as then, the numbers of accidents would increase at the same rate as the population. And if using a phone was dangerous in and of itself, then accidents would increase apart from the steady increase of population.

    • But don’t get me wrong distractions are a problem, but if that is the case, that the bans are to cut distractions, why target cell phones? If phone use is no more distracting than eating or drinking, why aren’t laws targeting all distractions?

      It is the selective targeting of phones without justification that bothers me.

      • Your argument about revenue generation fails because if it was all about making money, by your logic, all distractions would be punishable offenses.

        The reason cell phones are targeted specifically is that your brain has difficulty simultaneously participating in an electronic conversation and driving a vehicle safely. We may think we can and we don’t like it when others say we can’t, but common sense would say otherwise. Crash statistics really lack details when it comes to categorizing the actual distraction.

        Look, I understand your frustration concerning the restrictions of personal behavior. I’ve been involved in traffic safety for a dozen years and when asked face to face if you really think it’s a good idea to talk on a phone and drive a car at the same time, everyone agrees it’s a bad idea, but people still to it anyway. It’s all about the “me” mentality and the ego to think we aren’t distracted like all the other drivers are when they do it. So, in your eyes, how many people must die as a result of this behavior before we all decide it’s not safe?

        Like Mr. Trabue states, you have the right to do anything you want until it starts to be threat to others.

        • So even though stats do not support the idea that phone use is so dangerous that it needs to be outlawed, we should do it anyway. Again, if curbing distraction is the issue, then why is every distraction not included? Why is eating and drinking while driving still permitted…if its about distraction.

          Listen, id be on board (probably) if accidents were on the rise, but they aren’t. If it was a danger the way it is implied to be, accidents would increase, not decrease.

  3. John, if you have research to back up your hunch (that eating a burger IS as distracting as cell phone usage), then I’d support regulations against eating a burger while driving.

    Would you?

  4. too small a data set – cell phone related accidents may well be on the rise while other factors may be on the decline – for example – drinking alcohol

    if the cell phone related accidents are increasing but drinking related is decreasing faster than the cell phone increase – then overall, there will be fewer accidents, but an increase in cell phone related accidents.

    the difficulty comes in tracking the cause of accidents, since many places won’t collect stats or the driver is lying about what they were doing at the time of the accident

    • Feel free to not argue from speculation and provide some data.

      • But you’re not providing data to back up your speculation – you’re providing aggregate data that lacks specifics and meaning

        the reality is that there’s already laws that require drivers to have care and control of their vehicle – that includes things like smoking, eating, reading books or magazine or using a hands on cell phone or anything else that can distract drivers

        the question is do we need more laws to specify dangers or do we just need to better educate people

        I think that there’s something that seriously gone wrong when people have become so oblivious to their own safety that I’d almost say, let them crash and get them out of the gene pool, but since they can crash into other people, we can’t do that

    • I agree with Random Ntrygg here. The data presented are too limited to draw this conclusion, For example, an increase in cellphone connections may or may not have a direct correlation with increasing use while driving, with education campaigns and lots of media coverage pointing out the danger. There could be any number of other possibilities to explain these figures. That said, I don’t think legislation is the answer, even if driving and using the cellphone is somewhat riskier. I feel this is just a phase as we incorporate another piece of active (invasive?) technology into our everyday lives, and it might be money better spent if cars were made even safer than they are now. The original claim was that using a cellphone keeps one hand busy or, with a shoulder tuck, limits your movement and your control over the car. Now data suggests handsfree sets are even riskier since they divert the mind (really?) and also create a false sense of security in the driver making him more careless. Since even the reason why cellphone usage could lead to a higher accident rate has not been worked out, I think legislation can wait awhile.

      • The “education campaigns” are a recent invention. The laws are only a couple years old. Its not as if the numbers were on the rise, then once the boogey man was identified, people safened up.

  5. So, it appears you are advocating much stricter laws, not looser laws – is that right?

    But only punitive, after-the-damage-is-done sort of laws, not proactive, preventative measures?

    I favor both.

    What would your law look like? Something like…

    “While it is NOT illegal to talk on the phone, talk to a passenger, eat, drink or put on mascara while you’re driving, IF you get in a wreck and IF the wreck was due to you being distracted by any of these, you will face an additional charge/fine…”? like that?

    Can you punish a behavior that is not illegal? Would that sort of law run in to court troubles, if it were passed?

    • That is what I would rather a law like you discribed. It targets individuals who create accidrnts due to their behaviors. The fact is, not everyone is negatively effected by the same behaviors, and they should not be punished becaude (the generic) you can’t do it.

      • Then I come back to: Can you punish a behavior that is not illegal? It’s not illegal, for instance, to throw a frisbee in the park, but could/should we create a law that says, “EVEN THOUGH throwing frisbee in the park is not a criminal act, IF your frisbee accidentally puts out someone’s eye, you will be punished…”?

        I’m just wondering technically if we could legally have laws like that? Can we punish non-criminal behavior?

        • Yes dan, we do it all the time. Owning and shooting a gun is not itself illegal. Doing it in the wrong place or wrong time or wrong target is illegal.

        • Keep in mind, I am not opposed to making phone use while driving illegal, per se. But don’t sell it like its inherently dangerous.

        • Owning and shooting a gun is not itself illegal. Doing it in the wrong place or wrong time or wrong target is illegal.

          Well, I’d like to come out strongly in support of a law that would criminalize driving while operating a rifle…

  6. For what it’s worth, I find the way that the comment-placement is handled on whichever blogsite runs this to be confusing. Is the latest comment on top? On bottom? How do you know? You pretty much have to sort through all the comments to find out if anything new has been added.

    Not a complaint directed towards you, just this sort of blog setup, for consideration. I meant that last post to be at the bottom in response to your latest comment…

  7. Here’s the thing: I have personally witnessed, more than I can count, people on cell phones oblivious to what is happening around them, some having caused crashes and others nearly doing so. That is a fact I have observed.

    I have also seen the same thing – and have been the victim of a collision with damage to my car – with women putting on make-up! I have seen the same thing with people eating while driving. I have seen, and have often had to avoid being hit by, people doing just about everything possible in a moving vehicle, including reading a book while zooming along at 70mph!

    Should any of these behaviors be outlawed? NO! Other people do these things in perfect safety (well, not reading!) because the operation of the vehicle is paramount and attention is given to that in every respect. After all, pilots have a lot to do while talking on the radio at the same time and that is really no different than talking on the cell phone.

    What SHOULD happen is anytime these people cause an accident or perform some reckless maneuver, they should be charge with careless and reckless operation of a motor vehicle.

    To compare these behaviors with actual impairment of drugs or alcohol is inane. A particular behavior does not always impair one’s ability to maintain control of the vehicle, while drug or alcohol intoxication has been proven to do so. Speeding is a violation of a law, as is highway racing. Comparing these with cell phone use is illogical.

    • With all due respect, Glenn, you’re missing the point entirely. Comparing speeding with talking on the phone is valid; because they’re both things that we think we can do safely but cannot. So, by your logic, I should be able to drive as fast as I wish so long as I think it’s safe, and then punish me after I crash and possibly kill a few people in the process? I may feel that I’m a better driver after I’ve had a few drinks, so what’s the harm if I don’t hurt anyone else and get home without incident?

      While fewer than 40% of motor vehicle deaths are attributed to impairment, the majority are driver error. The fact is that alcohol related deaths have steadily been on the decline over the past 30 years (http://www.alcoholalert.com/drunk-driving-statistics.html), but the overall number of deaths still stays around 40,000 a year. Why is that? Drivers today are choosing to be more distracted.

      I understand your resistance to being told what you shouldn’t do and I respect your position of personal freedoms, but I think that you forget that driving is indeed a privilege and one you take for granted. It’s probably the most dangerous thing you do every day and it’s a shame you don’t take safe driving more seriously.

  8. No, I fully understand the point. Speed limits are set already and are law. There is no law against cell phone usage. Speeds must be controlled in some areas because of traffic flow. In open areas with little traffic the speed limit is whatever is safe and reasonable. To have someone drive down the middle of a city at 80 mph is stupid, which is why we set speed limits. High speeds in congested areas are inherently dangerous, and even in open areas high speeds are inherently dangerous because of the slightest problem – blow out, animal running out, etc – can cause tremendous damage.

    Talking on a phone is not inherently dangerous. It is no different than a pilot talking on his radio to air traffic control. Pilots are trained to take care of the plane first and if you need to drop the mic to do so, then they do so. Headsets also greatly help with this communication – I know, I have a commercial pilot license, instrument rating, multi-engine rating and helicopter rating. Talking on the radio has never been a hazard in aviation unless the pilot decided that he had to let the aircraft go just to talk.

    A cell phone does not present any more of a hazard to drivers than a radio does to pilots. A pilot who does something stupid like reaching for the mic instead of controlling the aircraft and then wrecks is charged with careless and reckless operation of an aircraft. They don’t outlaw the use of radios just because there are stupid pilots. You don’t outlaw the use of cell phones just because there are stupid drivers. But if they cause crashes, then hit them with careless and reckless operation.

    To say I don’t take driving seriously just demonstrates how little you know me, and why you have no right to make such a judgment about someone of whom you have no knowledge of driving habits, attitudes, philosophy, etc.

    • Ok, let’s analyze your reply section by section.

      Speed limits exist in both urban and rural settings. Apparently, you’re under the impression that there are no speed limits in open areas without congestion. I was unaware that Iowa allowed you to travel “whatever (speed) is safe and reasonable”.

      Talking on a phone while driving is inherently dangerous and it cannot compare to a pilot talking to air traffic control. For starters, the pilot is engaged in a conversation about what he is doing. I somehow doubt most of your conversations in a car while driving have anything to do with operating that vehicle.

      Radio usage by pilots in an integral part of operating an aircraft. You yourself were an air traffic controller – image the airports without them. Pilots have the luxury of generally knowing that their movements are anticipated and mapped. There are a lot more uncontrollable variables involved in the surroundings of a driver. As a pilot, I’m sure I don’t have to remind you about “situational awareness”.

      I really don’t have to know much about you to establish the fact that by your own statements, you overestimate your ability to operate a vehicle safely and your attitude reflects that. I don’t put much faith in your driving ability if you choose to distract yourself while driving – just don’t involve me in your crash.

  9. zqtx,

    Well, your logic is fallacious as it gets. Firstly, I NEVER said Iowa had the “safe and reasonable” speeds. I have been told those exist in states such as Montana and other western states with long open stretches of highway. I also understand that is the case on the autobahn. Speed must be held to reasonable limits in cities for pure safety reasons. My point is that speed must be controlled to avoid everyone doing something different, much as we also need traffic signals to control congestion and ensure the smooth, safe flow of traffic.

    Cell phone usage is indeed analogous to radio usage in aircraft. It is the person using the phone carelessly, just as the pilot who uses the radio carelessly, who causes the trouble. You don’t do a knee-jerk and punish the world by taking away freedoms just because there are fools out there.

    Your judging my driving abilities by my belief that cell phones are not the problem is about as illogical as judging my theological beliefs by saying abortion is wrong.

    And I have been driving for over 40 years without accident caused by me. During this time I have eaten food, read maps, talked on radios and telephones and was never so distracted that I didn’t know what was going on around me. Situational awareness, bub. Just because you aren’t capable of chewing bubble gum and walking at the same time, that doesn’t mean no one else is.

    • Glen’s last point is what this is all about. Different people have different abilities. Not every action has the same effect on everyone. Some people can drive just fine while driving, some can’t. I think there are a good many people who think just because they have trouble, that others have the same trouble.

      Its like my wife, if she is cold the kids have to wear jackets whther they are cold or not.

      This is true even with alcohol. I’m not suggesting anyone drink and drive in any capacity. But alcohol does not effect everyone the same way. Two shots of Bourbon is going to effect my wife much more severely than me. Talking on the phone is much more distracting for some than others. We don’t need to legislate everyone because some cannot function. Cite for distracted driving if one is swerving or causes an accident.

    • Wow, Glenn, you’re all over the place. Let’s keep your ridiculous analogies to the U.S. please, since it’s illegal to use cell phone while driving in Germany.

      Face it, any argument you make condoning dangerous behavior for an activity that you don’t automatically have the right to do just makes you look stupid. Just ask one of the tens of thousands of families adversely impacted by some schmuck who thought he was immune to driving distracted.

      • Gentlemen,

        To paraphrase your own book, Proverbs 16:18 I believe, pride goeth before a fall.

        I guarantee you that you’re not as good a driver as you think you are. As someone who has been directly involved with traffic safety for quite a while, I’ve seen this type of hubris for many years.

        Your comments are accurate concerning the consumption of alcohol, but you reach the wrong conclusion. You may be able to show a greater tolerance to the effects of alcohol, but that doesn’t mean you’re not impaired and still legally intoxicated regarding the operation of a motor vehicle.

        This “Monday morning quarterback” attitude of only punishing those who crash is just plain stupid.
        Oh, the irony here… I’m the one using a bible reference and advocating for traffic safety when I’m one of those who makes a good living on those asshats who drive recklessly.

        • Here’s the thing: Airline pilots are restricted from having non-operational conversations below 10,000 because that is where things start getting busy. The analogy is that any responsible person using a cell phone does not do it while driving in busy, complex situations. A responsible person uses the phone judiciously and not frivolously while driving. And that is the crux. If you make cell phone usage while driving illegal, then if I am cruising down the highway with little traffic I am not able to make a 30 second call to let someone know my current position. The whole issue is not “hubris” or “pride” – it is a matter of responsible and intelligent operation of whatever it may be – GPS, map, phone, hamburger. You do not punish responsible people just because there are irresponsible people.

          And to say it is stupid to punish wrongdoer is itself a stupid statement. All crimes are punished “after the fact”!

          You are the one with the ridiculous analogy of speed limits and cell phone usage. My point is that speed variance affects all drivers – cell phone usage doesn’t. You mentioned my reference to Germany’s speed limits yet I said the same about out western U.S. – open terrain with no traffic has no use for speed limits, and that was the only point I was making. You are the one who brought in the poor logic of comparing speeding with cell phone usage.

          And just what Bible reference can you twist to advocate traffic safety? I must have missed that one.

          I made no argument condoning dangerous behavior; on the contrary, I made an argument for not calling cell phone usage while driving a dangerous behavior. it is not always dangerous.

          Do you next want a law telling me when and how I can wipe my tail?

  10. I think Z hit the nail on the head. Accidents caused by drunk driving have been on the decline for the last 30 years-incidentally the same period as the rise of cell phone usage. John’s statistical analysis would be similar to saying that we ought not vaccinate against polio because mortality rates were actually on the decline in the 1950’s- even while polio was ravaging our population. Just because we are winning the battle against the greater of two evils does not mean that we ought not worry ourselves with the lesser.
    This, by the way, is coming from someone who has been a drunk driver, used a cellphone in the car, eaten Chinese food with chopsticks while driving with my knee, and changed my entire outfit while driving. Not once did I get in an accident while doing these things. In fact, at one point in my life, I was a pretty regular drunk driver-I couldn’t walk in a straight line but I could drive 25 minutes from the bar to my house. Just because you have a “talent” for driving drunk or distracted does not mean that you should be permitted to do it. Come on.

    • I dont think its a valid argument. The argument is basically: every other event which causes car accidents is on such decline that even though phone use is so dangerous its creating a problem that is being over powered by the other declines, so that overall incidents are going down, even though statistically they should be going up. it doesnt make sense. You and others want us to believe that even though in 10 years phone use has gone up 150%, and cars have gone up about 12% that all other causes of accidents are down so much that the problems phones cause are absorbed to the point where accidents are decline. Really?

      • No one said cell phones were as dangerous as drunk driving, or that they caused an equal amount of accidents. Your statistics certainly don’t give any context to the causes of accidents. Surely there must be statistics on this?

        • um, George:

          “Drivers on mobile phones are more impaired than drivers at .08 BAC”

          Dan’s 2nd comment. http://truthinreligionandpolitics.com/2011/07/25/govt-save-us/#comment-2980

          Which made me find the study claiming talking to passengers was more dangerous that using the phone(which turns out to be NOT THAT DISTRACTED, according to the U of Michigan), which is dan were correct (dan’s cited research) then talking to my wife while driving was more dangerous than being drunk. Either than or drunk driving is inherently safe(er) than talking to my wife, so, maybe I’ll drink before going out and tell her to stop talking because its dangerous.

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