Driving under the influence of a cell phone

A recent study found that cell phone use put drivers at a significantly greater risk of a collision. Even more shocking were the findings that using a cell phone while driving can pose nearly the same risks as driving while at the legal limit for alcohol. 1

Currently, five U.S. states and more than 30 countries prohibit cell phone use while driving because of its link to traffic accidents. Cell phone use while driving is also banned in Quebec, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, and most recently in Ontario – but what about the rest of Canada?

Recently, the Ontario Medical Association (OMA) compiled studies from around the world and published a report called ‘Cellular Phone Use and Driving: A Dangerous Combination’. The OMA clearly outlines their recommendations, which include taking action to curb the use of cell phones while driving - including dialling, texting and e-mailing. 2

According to the Ontario Ministry of Transportation Web site, using a cell phone reduces what a driver sees, slows reaction time and changes the way drivers react — especially in heavy traffic. However, in the case of an emergency when a cell phone is needed, they recommended the following:

  • Pull over safely if conditions allow
  • Keep the emergency call as brief as possible
  • Alert the caller that you are on the road
  • End conversations immediately if driving conditions or situations become hazardous 3

Of course as a GM driver, your best bet for making calls is OnStar® Hands-Free Calling. It’s easy to use and keeps your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road. OnStar now comes standard on most new GM vehicles. Click here to learn more about Hands-Free Calling.

While it’s probably only a matter of time before hand-held cell phone use while driving is banned nationwide, it’s best to just remember that cell phones and driving, like alcohol and driving, simply don’t mix. Let’s all just hang up.


Sources:

  1. www.theglobeandmail.com
  2. http://www.oma.org/Health/Reports/CellphonesDrivingSafetySept08.pdf
  3. http://www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/safety/topics/cellular.shtml

Legal:
®OnStar services require vehicle electrical system (including battery), wireless service and GPS satellite signals to be available and operating for features to function properly. OnStar acts as a link to existing emergency service providers. Subscription Service Agreement required. Call 1-888-4-ONSTAR (1-888-466-7827) or visit OnStar®for OnStar’s Terms and Conditions, Privacy Statement and details and system limitations.

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