Hands Off, Howard County!

Friday, October 1, marked the day the statewide law went into effect banning handheld cell phones. (Here’s the article from the Flier.)

What do you think?  Is this a good idea?  Our consensus was generally that, while it’s kind of a pain and seems inconvenient, it probably is safer for everyone to put down the phone and watch the road.  Most of us will agree that we’ve had a few seconds of distracted driving at one time or another that have resulted in almost drifting out of a lane or delayed reaction to a stop sign or red light.

Enforceability is another issue.  As it stands, the offense is merely a secondary one, so drivers can’t be pulled over just for talking on a cell phone.  The suspicion of a primary offense, like speeding, must be present first.

It will be interesting to see how this new law impacts statistics on accidents, etc., as officials attribute “some” of the 549 Maryland traffic deaths last year to cell phone use.  Stay tuned…

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