With the increasing roadway danger posed by distracted drivers, Ford Motor Co. has officially come out in favor of federal legislation that would ban texting while driving.
Ford is the first automobile manufacturer to do so.
A bill first introduced in the U.S. Senate in late July would require states to prohibit texting or emailing while operating a car or truck–or risk being stripped of 25% of their annual federal highway funds.
As discussed in the above clip, the legislation was prompted by a recent Virginia Tech study indicating that a texting driver is 23 times more likely to get into an accident than a non-distracted motorist.
In a written statement posted on the company website, Sue Cischke, Ford’s Group Vice President for Sustainability, Environment and Safety Engineering said:
The most complete and most recent research shows that activity that draws drivers’ eyes away from the road for an extended period while driving, such as text messaging, substantially increases the risk of accidents. Ford believes hands-free, voice-activated technology substantially reduces that risk by allowing drivers to keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. Ford supports a ban on hand-held text messaging while driving – and we endorse the legislation introduced by Senator Charles E. Schumer (D-NY) and Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY) that would encourage a more rapid transition to hands-free and voice activated technologies. This legislative approach addresses a nationwide problem we can all agree is necessary to improve safety.
InformationWeek suggested that Ford’s backing may in part be marketing driven: “Ford’s stance could also be viewed as an endorsement of its in-car Sync system, which reads text messages and operates cell phones with simple voice commands.”
According to Sen. Schumer, “Ford deserves credit for stepping up as the first car company to endorse a ban on this dangerous habit. We are gathering a critical mass of support for this bill, which will give us the momentum we need to get it passed.”
Unfortunately, car accidents from distracted drivers cause serious injuries and death every day across the state of Virginia. If you–or someone you love–have been injured in an automobile accident, do not hesitate to get in touch with the Personal Injury lawyers at the Law Offices of Richard J. Serpe, P.C., Toll Free 877-544-5323.