The summit brought together safety experts, researchers, industry representatives, elected officials and members of the public who shared their expertise, experiences, and ideas for reducing distracted driving behavior and addressed the safety risk posed by this growing problem.
The summit conference also culminated in a presidential executive order banning federal employees from texting while driving on the job or in a government-owned vehicle. The order also encourages federal contractors and others doing business with the government to adopt and enforce their own policies banning texting while driving on the job.
Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood also announced several initiatives to combat distracted driving, including the Department’s plan to create three separate rulemakings that would consider:
- Making permanent restrictions on the use of cell phones and other electronic devices in rail operation
- Banning text messaging altogether, and restrict the use of cell phones by truck and interstate bus operators
- Disqualifying school bus drivers convicted of texting while driving, from maintaining their commercial driver’s licenses
“Keeping Americans safe is without question the federal government’s highest priority – and that includes safety on the road, as well as on mass transit and rail,” Secretary LaHood said. “I’m greatly encouraged by the work accomplished at this summit. Working together, we’re going to make sure that traveling in America is as safe as it can possibly be and I strongly encourage the public to take personal responsibility for their behavior and show a healthy respect for the rules of the road.”
A bill previously introduced in Congress would, if passed, link state passage of distracted driving laws to federal highway funds.
The Commonwealth of Virginia and 17 other states already ban texting while driving . Nonetheless, car accidents brought about by distracted or reckless drivers cause serious injuries and death every day across the state of Virginia and throughout the country. Lives have been ruined and families devastated by reckless or inattentive motorists. If you–or someone you love–have been injured in an automobile accident caused by a distracted driver, 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.