As the threat of distracted driving has grown, local communities and states from across the country have turned to increasingly drastic measures in order to crack down on the cellphone usage scourge.
States and municipalities that have never had a distracted driving ban of any kind have begun to institute them in force, and those areas that do already have them in place have either discussed or approved heightened fines for those in violation of the ban. Our state’s own Senate recently approved a bill that would levee steeper fines on those caught utilizing a handheld cell device, Connecticut increased their citation amounts a year ago, and New Jersey is in the midst of debating a proposal that would do the same.
But not everyone is so sure that simply increasing the fine amounts is the right way to go about cutting down on distracted driving. The National Motorists Association President argues that more education is needed to steer drivers away from this dangerous behavior. A representative from AAA, though, says that the increased fines might work. That individual bases their reasoning on studies that looked into seat belt usage. That research suggested that increased fines for violating seat belt laws led to more people using their seat belts.
A Senator from New Jersey offered his opinion rather succinctly, saying that the current slap on the wrist needs to become a slap to the face.