Our nation’s Transportation Secretary is strengthening efforts to get people across the country to stop using their cellphones while driving.
Today, he announced what’s being referred to as the “Blueprint For Ending Distracted Driving.” The initiative is partly an extension of a program already being implemented in Hartford, Connecticut, and Syracuse, New York. In those two cities last year, law enforcement crackdowns and educational campaigns led texting rates to drop by as much as 72% in Hartford and 32% in Syracuse. The expansion aims to see if it will work on a statewide level, with $2.4 million in federal grant money going to California and Delaware so those states can enact similar efforts.
That’s not all that the blueprint wants to achieve. It also calls on United States lawmakers to make a ban on cellphone usage across the country, not just at the state level. Currently, 11 states are without any kind of cellphone law, and the Transportation Secretary has these states in his sights.
In addition, he hopes that vehicle manufacturers can begin to implement technologies that would curb the practice of distracted driving, and asks those persons responsible for conducting drivers’ education courses to include a section on the consequences of driving while distracted.
This initiative shouldn’t come as a surprise, as cutting down on distracted driving has been a cornerstone of the current transportation administration.