The National Transportation Board (NTSB), hoping to put an end to DWD (Driving While Distracted), voted unanimously today called for the first-ever nationwide ban on driver use of personal electronic devices (PEDs) while operating a motor vehicle. The safety recommendation specifically calls for the 50 states and the District of Columbia to ban the nonemergency use of portable electronic devices (other than those designed to support the driving task) for all drivers. The safety recommendation also urges use of the NHTSA model of high-visibility enforcement to support these bans and implementation of targeted communication campaigns to inform motorists of the new law and heightened enforcement.
“According to NHTSA, more than 3,000 people lost their lives last year in distraction-related accidents“, said Chairman Deborah A.P. Hersman. “It is time for all of us to stand up for safety by turning off electronic devices when driving.”
The recommendation to ban use of personal electronic devices — smart phones, Ipods — while driving would also include banning the use of hands free phone devices.