New Ordinance In Tempe Put Brakes On Distracted Drivers

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Distracted driving is a serious issue which is increasing day by day and it has reached a level at which it is believed as more deadly than intoxicated driving.

There is no any specific law that targets the individuals using cell phones while driving so, the City of Tempe is now in the list of cities that have implemented their own law to cope with the increasing issue of distracted driving and under the law, using the cell phones while driving is not banned but if a cop observes anyone swerving and sees the individual is using a cell phone, then the individual has to pay a high amount of fine for the offense.

Linda Hampton Keith said, “I’m always busy. I feel like everything has to be handled right now so I’ve been really really, good about putting the phone away while I’m driving and whatever it is it can wait”. She accepted that she texted while driving in past but she’s a new mom and learned her lesson.

A new ordinance is passed by the Tempe City Council according to which if any individual is stopped for driving erratically while using a cell phone, then he/she will have to pay heavy fine. The fine for the first offense is above than $100 and for the second time offender; it is above than $250.

Braided Bell said he is in the favor of the new law and added “I don’t want to pay a ticket. I will think twice before texting”.

Almost 3,000 individuals are killed every year due to the distracted related accidents, told by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Individuals under the age of 25 year are at more risk.

According to Tempe City Council member Kolby Granville, “There’s a lot of research that says its equivalent to having three or four beers, which we don’t allow. From a consistency standpoint, if drinking and driving is a behavior that we think is too risky, those (behaviors) that are of comparable risk should also not be permitted”. He also said, “If we can get somebody to quit drifting into the bike lane or drifting into the car in front of him, then in my opinion not only should we do it, we have to do it”. He led the charge to get the ordinance passed and added, “It’s not often you get to say to yourself, ‘I think I saved lives today. I think people were going to get injured and now they’re not because we put a law in place that most people think is a really good idea”.

Another statistic is here to show the danger that is associated with the distracted driving that if a person is driving at the rate of speed 55 mph and he/she looks down to send a text message. According to an estimate, it took almost 4 to 5 seconds and in that time, the area equal to the length of a football field can be passed and it is enough to hit any other motor vehicle which is travelling nearby.

Granville added, “If you’re texting on your phone, you’re playing with Pandora on your phone, you’re playing Angry Birds on your phone, it doesn’t matter that you’re texting per se, the (issue) is are you leaning over the road, are you failing to brake when you should be braking, are you endangering other people. I think we’re going to focus on the behavior, not specific things you’re doing on your phone”.

It is showed by the study that the use of a cell phone while driving can increase the chances of an accident up to 17%.

On 24rth of October, the new ordinance will begin.

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