Texting and Driving

Texting and Driving

Rachel Jarvis, contributor

The topic of texting and driving has been one of the most debated subjects and it still continues to be. Washington was the first state to officially ban texting and driving in 2007 and is slowly being followed by the rest of the united states. According to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute, the act of using one’s cell phone while driving reduces the brain’s activity associated with driving by 37 percent. People who text and drive are 6 times more likely to crash than intoxicated drivers. the use of cell phones while driving leads to 1.6 million crashes every year, according to the National Safety Council. In the United States alone. one out of every four car accidents are caused by distracted drivers responding to texts.

In 2017, 3,166 people were killed due to vehicle crashes caused by or including distracted drivers. A survey confirmed that 40 percent of teens claim that they have been in the car while a driver was distracted by their phone, putting the teens in danger.

If these statistics are not enough to scare people into putting their phones down for five minutes until they can pull over or reach their destination, the law will finally convince people to put down their phones. The amount of danger that the driver is putting themselves into, their passengers, and other vehicles while they are distracted is very serious.

In the state of Arizona, it is illegal to use a cell phone unless the device is in hands free mode. It is against the law to hold or support a device (meaning no resting the phone on your shoulder). One can also not read or reply to any message and cannot create a new message to send while driving. There is also the subject of social media, which is also unacceptable, as well as no reading, scrolling, watching, or web surfing of any kind.

In Arizona one is allowed to engage and/or disengage in the use of GPS, and starting or ending a call, if it is voice activated. wireless communication is allowed, and only in absolute emergencies, like reporting a crime or emergency situation. There are fines that are enforced if one is caught using their cell phones while driving. For first time offenses drivers can be fined up to two hundred and fifty dollars!

Put down the phone: Arizona bans cellphone use while driving