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NCJ Number: 204543 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Cell Phones and Police Agenices
Journal: Law and Order  Volume:52  Issue:1  Dated:January 2004  Pages:12,14,16
Author(s): Janet Dewey-Kollen
Date Published: January 2004
Page Count: 3
Sponsoring Agency: NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
Sale Source: NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article discusses how police agencies are dealing with cell phone use among drivers.
Abstract: More and more drivers report using cell phones while driving. The use of cell phones by drivers may result in 2,600 deaths, 330,000 moderate to critical injuries, and 1.5 million instances of property damage in America per year. Police are being called on by States, legislatures, and researchers to be more diligent when reporting and investigating crashes to determine whether cell phone use or other distractions were factors in crashes. A recommendation was recently issued to states to adopt laws prohibiting inexperienced drivers, those holding learner’s permits and intermediate licenses, from using cell phones while driving. In the last 3 years, all 50 States have considered legislation related to cell phones and driving. Laws in many States allow officers to issue citations for inattentive driving. New York is the only state to prohibit the use of hand-held phones while driving. Hand-held use of cell phones while driving dropped after the law took effect in November 2001, only to return to where it was before the law passed by March 2003. Some 144,000 citations have been issued by New York enforcement agencies since the law became effective, about 2 percent of all citations issued. As of August 2003, 17 States had passed laws regarding cell phones and driving or distracted driving, including prohibitions against school bus drivers from using phones while driving, requirements that drivers have one hand on the steering wheel, and requirements that head sets only cover one ear. A March 2003 survey on attitudes and behaviors by vehicle occupants found that respondents supported insurance penalties for being involved in a crash while using a cell phone; double or triple fines for traffic violations involving cell phone use; and a ban on all wireless phone use while a car is moving (except 911 calls). Over half of the respondents believed that the use of cell phones by other drivers were a major threat to their personal safety.
Main Term(s): Traffic law enforcement; Traffic offenses
Index Term(s): Accident investigation; Auto related offenses; Highway safety; Public Attitudes/Opinion; Reckless driving; Traffic accidents
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