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Thread: "Calling" All Drivers

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    Default "Calling" All Drivers

    How was your commute today? Did you notice the man, woman or teen behind the wheel eating a bagel and drinking coffee with their hands; using their shoulder to hold their phone and their knees to steer? Alberta is quickly becoming a province being recognized, not for its success, but for having some of the most dangerous and reckless drivers in the world. The real danger is that we, as citizens, have become habituated to it. Every week, 9 Albertans are killed in motor vehicle collisions. We refuse to let our children be exposed to second hand smoke, yet we are willing to let them play on the streets where they are exposed to bigger threats – distracted drivers. Everyone has, at one point, seen at least one person on the phone during their commute, either texting or talking, while they drive. If you follow them long enough, they are likely going to make a mistake. It may not be as catastrophic as a four-car pile-up, but it is nonetheless, a large amount of time where that driver has NO IDEA what is going on right in front of them – Do you feel safe with that person on the road? One of the leading causes of unintentional deaths in Alberta is due to motor vehicle collisions and of these, 80% is caused by distracted drivers. Statistics show that if you talk on the phone while driving, you reaction time is decreased by 18%, and you are four to six times more likely to be involved in a collision. That means you may be more impaired than a legally intoxicated driver! Want more stats? Well, here’s the shocker: if you text while driving, the risk of collision increases by twenty-three times! One of the scariest facts of all is, in the five seconds you take to look at a text on your phone, you could have travelled the length of a football field.

    Countless Albertans drive their vehicles while talking on their company phones because they feel it is an obligation and a necessity as an employee. The Coalition for Cellphone Free Driving has laboured for nearly five years, lobbying employers to break this frame of mind and safeguard their employees, or face serious legal consequences. It is in the best interest of employers to ensure that their employees are not involved in collisions due to cell phone use while on company time. There have been cases in the United States where companies have been slapped with multi-million-dollar lawsuits for the fault of cell phone use while driving related collisions. In 2005, the Coalition took it upon themselves to convince companies around Alberta to adopt a policy that would restrict employees from using cell phones, both hand-held and hands-free. In their most recent meeting, Aegis Mobility demonstrated the latest product in driver safety called DriveAssist. This software detects when an individual is driving, re-routes inbound calls to a message indicating that the person trying to be reached is driving and informing the caller that their call will soon be returned; thus eliminating the reaction to answer a call. However, the message of safer roads is not exclusive to Alberta or Canada for that matter. Talk show host and Television Queen Oprah Winfrey has urged her viewers to pledge their car as a “No Phone Zone”. With companies like Aegis Mobility, The Coalition for Cellphone Free Driving is growing in size, and to date has over 50 members, all with the same intentions, to “cure collisions”.

    Currently, provincial governments across Canada are taking steps to ensure the safety of their citizens; however the steps they have been taking are not the most effective. There is a common misconception that using hands-free devices, such as Bluetooth headsets or onboard calling systems eliminate the dangers associated with cell phone use while driving. Unfortunately, governments across the nation have bought into this misconception and have implemented policies that ban the use of handheld devices while operating a vehicle. Although the right idea has been put into place, they have not gone far enough as they have not banned hands-free. Studies have shown that there is no benefit to using a hands-free device in place of a handheld device because it is the conversation that is the distraction. Many may refute this argument by saying “Well, what about a passenger? If I am talking to a passenger in my car while I am driving, isn’t that conversation a distraction too?” The answer is a simple “No”. If a passenger is in the car, they are aware of what is going on around them; therefore if, for example, the weather suddenly turns poor, they will abruptly end the conversation or, in some cases, even help the driver. This cannot be done if an individual is on the other side of a phone call. Implementing a policy strictly on handheld devices will not reduce the danger, and in fact, gives people a false sense of security. If the provincial government really has any interest in making Alberta roads safer for its citizens, then they will ensure that legislation is put in place to ban cell phone use, both handheld and hands-free.

    We as a society have this tendency to separate ourselves from the notion that a vehicle is the most dangerous thing on the road. We assume that we as humans have an amazing ability to eat, drink, text and talk while driving. We fail to realize that at any moment, even for the one minute phone call reminding you to pick up the milk, could change your life forever. Whether it is a necessity, fad or an obsession, it is a distraction when used while driving. What call is worth a life?

    For further information visit: www.cellphonefreedriving.ca or contact us at 780 492-5775.

    -- Abhaya Prasad and Dr. Louis H Francescutti
    Last edited by NoreneS; 15-04-2010 at 10:08 AM. Reason: embedded code

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    There is a common misconception that using hands-free devices, such as Bluetooth headsets or onboard calling systems eliminate the dangers associated with cell phone use while driving. Unfortunately, governments across the nation have bought into this misconception and have implemented policies that ban the use of handheld devices while operating a vehicle. Although the right idea has been put into place, they have not gone far enough as they have not banned hands-free. Studies have shown that there is no benefit to using a hands-free device in place of a handheld device because it is the conversation that is the distraction.
    And yet Alberta's proposed legislation exempts hands free devices. Sigh.

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    I think that there is tremendous merit behind this cause. But I also think there are two factors to consider:

    1) Distracted driving prohibitions need to extend over ALL driver distractions, not just cell phones. Alberta drivers need to believe that driving is a privilege, NOT a god-given right with some conditions.

    2) A law is only as good as the enforcement behind it.


    Personally, I'd like to see a Coalition Against Distracted and Stupid Driving, with cellphone use being one of its subcategories.
    Imagine: a world free of hypothetical situations!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
    And yet Alberta's proposed legislation exempts hands free devices. Sigh.
    I'm not suggesting that a conversation is not at all distracting. But compared to issues with hand-held devices such as having to use a hand/limb/neck or potentially taking one's eyes off the road, how is conversing on a hands-free device any more distracting than conversing with someone within the vehicle? To what bounds should distraction-related legislation end? To a ridiculous extrapolation, the driver should be in a sealed compartment with radio/climate/light contols that only work when the vehicle is at rest.

  5. #5

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    My vehicle has Bluetooth and I've found that I'm not nearly as distracted while driving while using it, as I was when holding a cellphone to my ear. It's no more distracting than having a conversation with someone in the seat next to me.

    A cellphone to the ear obstructs peripheral vision, and makes turning difficult since you only have one hand to turn the wheel and most turns require a two-handed hand-off to properly maneuver the steering wheel.

    Don't even get me started on people trying to signal when holding a phone (doesn't happen) or trying to drive a standard.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
    There is a common misconception that using hands-free devices, such as Bluetooth headsets or onboard calling systems eliminate the dangers associated with cell phone use while driving. Unfortunately, governments across the nation have bought into this misconception and have implemented policies that ban the use of handheld devices while operating a vehicle. Although the right idea has been put into place, they have not gone far enough as they have not banned hands-free. Studies have shown that there is no benefit to using a hands-free device in place of a handheld device because it is the conversation that is the distraction.
    And yet Alberta's proposed legislation exempts hands free devices. Sigh.
    yeah bad hands free. and ban manual transmissions. and ban gps. shall we ban fm radio and cd players in cars next? you think things will change if you ban hands free? they won't. people who are ****** drivers will always find a way to **** up.

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    http://onemansblog.com/2009/06/19/cr...ding-in-india/
    You where saying...........
    This is also posted on another thread.
    Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

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    ^ haha. and this is after they banned "passenger seating" so the driver can't have a distracting hands-free conversation. AND after they banned hauling your three kids around on a motorcycle cuz you know how distracting they can be

  9. #9

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    All this talk about hand held devices etc:
    No one has mentioned the fact that 6 hockey/soccer kids in the back can be a distraction.
    Sometimes even one kid can do that.
    Having said that, I do think it is time we all got serious about our driving habits.
    We have all seen people doing things in moving vehicles that would make our hair curl (if you have any).
    My feeling is a couple of d-merits would have more of an impact than just a fine alone.
    Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

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    Companies should be committed to safety on the roadways. Managers who give a bit about their employees wellbeing should implement a ban, relying on their own common sense to do so.
    The sooner we get young drivers off their cells the better.
    I was rear ended by a young man texting. I couldn't believe it...........

  11. #11

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    I had a long discussion with our HR business partner regarding a company-wide cellphone ban while driving (hands-free would be ok) after witnessing one of my Calgary co-workers driving erratically while on holding a phone to her head.

    I don't want to see anyone in the company getting hurt, or more importantly, hurting an innocent person because of their stupidity.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  12. #12

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    I see a member MLA introduced this PROPOSAL vs the Minister. That should be enough of a tip off as to how serious this PROPOSAL is. This CONS government is enough to "drive" us crazy?
    Time will tell on this new Alberta Government.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spill View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
    And yet Alberta's proposed legislation exempts hands free devices. Sigh.
    I'm not suggesting that a conversation is not at all distracting. But compared to issues with hand-held devices such as having to use a hand/limb/neck or potentially taking one's eyes off the road, how is conversing on a hands-free device any more distracting than conversing with someone within the vehicle? To what bounds should distraction-related legislation end? To a ridiculous extrapolation, the driver should be in a sealed compartment with radio/climate/light contols that only work when the vehicle is at rest.
    The person sitting beside you understands and realizes the context of what is going on and will stop talking if road conditions worsen, may warn you if someone is crossing the street, etc.

    Numerous studies have showed there is precisely zero difference in distraction between hand sets and hands free. So banning one and not the other is counter productive in the extreme.

    Quote Originally Posted by DTrobotnik
    yeah bad hands free. and ban manual transmissions. and ban gps. shall we ban fm radio and cd players in cars next? you think things will change if you ban hands free? they won't. people who are ****** drivers will always find a way to **** up.
    We actually agree. Considering most laws/rules of the road are barely enforced if at all, it seems pointless to bring in yet another one, especially if it is counter productive or intuitive.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by whynow99 View Post
    I see a member MLA introduced this PROPOSAL vs the Minister. That should be enough of a tip off as to how serious this PROPOSAL is. This CONS government is enough to "drive" us crazy?
    It's still a government bill that came from the minister: http://www.assembly.ab.ca/net/index....selectbill=014

    Ministers often ask MLAs to carry legislation for them in the legislature. It's not the same as a private member's bill.

  15. #15

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    How about better training of new drivers? Obtaining a drivers liscence in this province (counntry)is relatively easy compared to Western Europe for instance. This is a total knee jerk policy if it where to be implemented. I'd be interested to see how the introduction of mobile phones have impacted collision rates in the last 25 years in various jurisdictions. Also, empoying Oprah in your arguement is a sure way to lose credibilty.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
    The person sitting beside you understands and realizes the context of what is going on and will stop talking if road conditions worsen, may warn you if someone is crossing the street, etc.
    I'm not buying that. My cursory review of online reports of cell-phone-use studies doesn't convince me that this aspect was either as closely studied or consistently concluded as such.
    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
    Numerous studies have showed there is precisely zero difference in distraction between hand sets and hands free. ...
    Indeed. Although it seems conclusions appear to differ on affects of listening versus responding. However, a recent study on real-world results proves interesting, if not perplexing (reported here and here.) Also interesting (or perhaps suspicious is more appropriate) was this hands-free-device maker's study results. Heh.

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    "The person sitting beside you understands and realizes the context of what is going on"
    `````````````````THANK YOU MARCEL !``````````````````````````

    There is no need for the mind to wander while listening to the response of the second party in this situation. This is not the case while either on hands free, radio or hand held. The mind IS distracted from the interaction in traffic while it focuses more intently on "inferences" in the voice as opposed to the many subtle visual cues that it normally picks up on during a face to face situation (yes even if they are sitting beside you as opposed to actually face to face.

    You can prove this thru a rather simple yet fun test:
    Read a short paragraph to someone face to face then a different one side by side (with or without peaking at each other) and a third paragraph read physically isolated from each other, perhaps room to room Then ask the person what was said. You will be very surprised !

    Failure to catch subtleties and some emotional responses that lead to better understanding of a statement declines with lesser personal contact.

    This can be also demo'd here when you see people jump the shark or reacte poorly to what may be un or intensionally a personal attack. This is usually thru poor writing skills, the misstatement or misunderstanding of a written vs verbal conversation.

    You also see the results that some of the anonymity creates that will allow people to speak or type/text disrespectfully in comparison to what they may think twice about were the same situation to occur in person. People are quite willing to "throw it down" when separated.

    I do believe in baby steps though, lets get this legislation in place

  18. #18

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    Well I'm glad all of you are supporting this with your best anecdotal evidence. Isn't anyone else bothered by the principle of this; an existing ban is ineffective so surely we must ban more things. The author must really be misinterpreting the trend that the results from numerous studies indicate.

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    Rural MLA uncertain on distracted driving bill

    Excerpted from: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/edmonton/st...-reaction.html



    A Progressive Conservative MLA from rural Alberta says he needs to talk with his constituents before deciding whether to support distracted driving legislation proposed by the province.

    "I've got to be careful who I'm talking with about this driving thing," said Barry McFarland, who represents Little Bow. He admits he's seen driving behaviour in cities that could merit the new rules.

    "You know it's not picking on city people, but where you've got so much more traffic, it's scary to see some of the people driving around. They're not even doing the shoulder check and they're blasting out backwards from parking lots."

    McFarland has been an outspoken critic of legislation he felt went too far in trying to influence behaviour, such as smoking bans.

    On Wednesday, the government introduced Bill 16, which would prohibit the use of hand-held cellphones and texting while driving. If the legislation is passed, other distractions such as reading, writing and grooming could also bring the $172-dollar fine.

    However, Dr. Louis Francescutti, a professor in the department of Public Health Sciences at the University of Alberta, said allowing hands-free cellphones is a big mistake.

    The province's proposed distracted driving legislation is a 'baby step' that should have gone much farther, says Dr. Louis Francescutti. (CBC)
    He said studies show no difference between the distraction presented by a hands-free cellphone compared to a hand-held one.

    "[The bill is] a step in the right direction, but it's a baby step, when they could have taken a giant leap and really made a big difference," he said.

    "It's the conversation that's the distracter. And the conversation with the passenger is actually very different than the conversation you're having with someone that doesn't see the traffic conditions you're in," he said.

    'Inattention blindness'

    Talking on the phone while driving creates a condition known as "inattention blindness," Francescutti said, meaning drivers "see things before them, but it won't register that they're a danger."

    'One in four collisions are caused by distractions, and if we can stop half of that we're ahead of the game.'óLuke Ouellette, transportation minister
    The legislation should have included higher fines, demerit points and a ban on hands-free cellphone use, he said.

    "If the province is actually going to expect that there's going to be less collisions by doing this, studies tell us that there's not going to be less collisions. You need a total ban."

    Transportation Minister Luke Ouellette said he's had lots of positive emails in the time since the legislation was announced.

    "One in four collisions are caused by distractions, and if we can stop half of that we're ahead of the game," he said, adding that the proposed bill does not include a hands-free ban in part because no other province has gone that direction.

    The legislation strikes a balance by "backing off on something that we thought was the least enforceable of all of the distracted driving," said Ouellett



    Read more: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/edmonton/st...#ixzz0lHN8IGaS
    Imagine: a world free of hypothetical situations!

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    Proposed driving legislation may not be directly enforced

    Excerpted from http://edmonton.ctv.ca/servlet/an/lo...b=EdmontonHome


    Alberta's transportation minister admits the proposed distracted driving legislation may not be directly enforced.

    This comes just a day after the province disclosed details of what it calls some of the most comprehensive distracted driving legislation in Canada banning the use of hand-held cellphones, text messaging, reading, writing, personal grooming, and puts restrictions on using other electronic devices while driving.

    Currently, police can only charge a motorist if their distractions cause them to drive dangerously, or causes a crash.

    Bill 16 proposes to give law enforcement the power to pull over and ticket drivers for just seeing them using their phones, or are otherwise 'distracted'. But the transportation minister now says that may not actually happen should this bill pass.

    "The enforcement might only come -- even when there is another infraction that's seen and then they see they were distracted with something," said Transportation Minister Luke Ouellette.

    On Thursday, CTV cameras caught two Conservative MLAs talking on their cellphones while driving. And while the action is not currently illegal, both admit their mistake.

    "Normally I do wear my earpiece or pull over. I did not do that on this occasion, but I will in the future," said MLA for Calgary-Lougheed Dave Rodney.

    MLA for Edmonton-Manning Peter Sandhu offered up a similar explanation.

    "Well I'm gonna change, I got to start change, I changed since this morning," he said.

    Premier Ed Stelmach was quick to deflect questions about the two MLAs seen talking on their cellphones.

    "There is no law. This is just an introduction of a piece of legislation," he said.

    Meantime, the transportation minister feels MLAs should be practicing what it is being preached.

    "They shouldn't be doing it. They should lead by example," said Ouellette.

    The minister tells CTV News he will now be advising all Tory MLAs to begin following the proposed rules immediatley.

    If passed, the legislation comes with a hefty fine of $172. It is expected to be debated in the fall.
    Imagine: a world free of hypothetical situations!

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    So exactly what I said. This is a piece of "feel good" legislation that will do precisely nothing to reduce accidents, and indeed MLA's from the Conservatives have shown that they themselves don't recognize the increased risk of accident they're placing themselves in, or don't care.

    But everyone can pat themselves on the back for having done something, right?

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    I think the legislation will make a difference if it passes. but I also agree with Marcel's point. The CAA guy said as much as well, and it's a pretty well documented statistic. In a way, it's like banning drunk driving, unless you were drinking rye. People considering drinking and driving will just stick to rye, and this is only going to encourage sales of hands free devices, and consequently give us the false sense we are accomplishing something, when we really aren't.

    Stats show hands free conversations are just as much of a distraction as using a cell phone, and I'm certain those drafting this legislation were aware of that. We know it's just as much of a problem, and there's no way it could have slipped by unnoticed.

    So I'm puzzled as to why it wasn't included. Is it a perceived enforcement problem? Does someone have shares in the hands free industry? Is it because MLA's such as those seen talking on their cell above can easily afford a hands free device, and this legislation effectively makes their form of distracted driving acceptable?
    Last edited by Jimbo; 16-04-2010 at 12:51 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
    I think the legislation will make a difference if it passes. but I also agree with Marcel's point. The CAA guy said as much as well, and it's a pretty well documented statistic. In a way, it's like banning drunk driving, unless you were drinking rye. People considering drinking and driving will just stick to rye, and this is only going to encourage sales of hands free devices, and consequently give us the false sense we are accomplishing something, when we really aren't.

    Stats show hands free conversations are just as much of a distraction as using a cell phone, and I'm certain those drafting this legislation were aware of that. We know it's just as much of a problem, and there's no way it could have slipped by unnoticed.

    So I'm puzzled as to why it wasn't included. Is it a perceived enforcement problem? Does someone have shares in the hands free industry? Is it because MLA's such as those seen talking on their cell above can easily afford a hands free device, and this legislation effectively makes their form of distracted driving acceptable?
    Although Ideally it would be nice to tackle the hands-free devices as well, I agree with an earlier poster that it's baby-steps and it is in the right direction. Also, I would tweak your analogy more to prohibiting driving while drinking a rye, unless you have a beer or rye hat on. At least you have both hands on the wheel while impaired and would be arguably safer

    I also think the legislation change will make a positive difference. Although enforcement is always an issue and can get subjective with issues like this, legislation change or new laws have other aspects like education and awareness to consider. I don't think the outcome or reasonable expectation is to have every driver to stop using cellphones or be distracted while driving over night; it is a slow process, much like when seatbelt legislation was put in place. Through a combination of creative enforcement, education and awareness campaigns, I think we will become creatures of habit and leave the cellphone and eyeshadow in the purse/murse/whatever.

  24. #24

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    I cannot believe all of you are so comfortable with proposing legislation which seeks to limit us. In my opinion there better be a whole lot of reputable research to support the banning of anything. To suppose that banning hands free devices will increase safety because banning hand held devices has not is a logical fallacy.

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    I am sorry debos that you think a safety issue is big brother
    Call my friend Louis (Dr. Louis Francescutti) for the hard data or if you'd like I will contact him and post the data here
    You are however still living in a free country and you can do as you please I just hope you're never in an accident

  26. #26

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    You have to understand that it is more than a safety issue. Anytime a government seeks to influence our behaviour their reasons for it need to be based on sound reasoning and good precedence, not to mention that it needs to follow a thurough and transparent process. Seat belts are a good example of this.

    So what kind of hard data is there on the banning of hands free devices? Are there jurisdictions that have passes such legislation?

    I appreciate your concern Blueline.

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    Quote Originally Posted by debos View Post
    I cannot believe all of you are so comfortable with proposing legislation which seeks to limit us. In my opinion there better be a whole lot of reputable research to support the banning of anything. To suppose that banning hands free devices will increase safety because banning hand held devices has not is a logical fallacy.
    It is not a logical fallacy when numerous studies have clearly demonstrated the two are equivalent in their detriment to driver attentiveness and reaction times.

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    debos I - We appreciate your open mindedness
    I am being sincere when I say this.

  30. #30

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    Marcel: Correlation does not imply causation. This means that while hand held and hands free devices have been shown to detract from a persons concentration in similar fashion (thanks for the links Chump) it does not mean that hands free devices have attributed to increase in collisions. You would require separate and direct research to prove that.

    http://www.ccmta.ca/english/pdf/coll...stats_03_e.pdf

    I agree that even one fatality is too many and that we should continue to improve safety. However it does not mean that we should hastily push through legislation for political expediency or to satisfy the 'against everything' crowd.

  31. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel Petrin View Post
    It is not a logical fallacy when numerous studies have clearly demonstrated the two are equivalent in their detriment to driver attentiveness and reaction times.
    Slipping and pouring hot coffee on yourself does as well, it is even more dangerous. I wonder how long before a police sting outside a Tim Hortons is set up?

    http://articles.moneycentral.msn.com...ng.aspx?page=2

    1. Coffee: It always finds a way out of the cup.

    2. Hot soup: Many people drink it like coffee and run the same risks.

    3. Tacos: "A food that can disassemble itself without much help, leaving your car looking like a salad bar," says Hagerty.

    4. Chili: The potential for drips and slops down the front of clothing is significant.

    5. Hamburgers: From the grease of the burger to the ketchup and mustard on top, plenty of goop can end up on your hands, clothes and steering wheel.

    6. Barbecued food: Similar issue arises for barbecued foods as for hamburgers. The sauce may be great, but it will end up on whatever you touch.

    7. Fried chicken: Another food that leaves you with greasy hands, which means constantly wiping them on something, even if it's your shirt. It also makes the steering wheel greasy.

    8. Jelly- or cream-filled doughnuts: Has anyone ever eaten a jelly doughnut without some of the center oozing out? And jelly can be difficult to remove from material.

    9. Soft drinks: Not only are they subject to spills, but they also can fizz as you're drinking them if you make sudden movements. Most of us have childhood memories of soda fizz in the nose; the sensation isn't any more pleasant now.

    10. Chocolate: Like greasy foods, chocolate can coat your fingers as it melts against the warmth of your skin, leaving its mark anywhere you touch. Try to clean it off the steering wheel and you could end up unintentionally swerving
    Last edited by moahunter; 16-04-2010 at 06:21 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by debos View Post
    it does not mean that hands free devices have attributed to increase in collisions....
    ... but given the evidence of effect of use of these devices on driver performance, would you really wait until an increase in collision rate has been demonstrated?

    (I would say that I'm sure there are some studies showing increased collision rate and collision risk with these devices, but I don't have links at this point, I'll see if I can find some)

  33. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chump View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by debos View Post
    it does not mean that hands free devices have attributed to increase in collisions....
    ... but given the evidence of effect of use of these devices on driver performance, would you really wait until an increase in collision rate has been demonstrated?

    (I would say that I'm sure there are some studies showing increased collision rate and collision risk with these devices, but I don't have links at this point, I'll see if I can find some)

    Well by that same deductive reasoning you could say that because both types of devices effect driver performance in a similar manner and banning one type hasn't been effective then why would banning the other be?

    I'd be interested to see the data.

  34. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chump View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by debos View Post
    it does not mean that hands free devices have attributed to increase in collisions....
    ... but given the evidence of effect of use of these devices on driver performance, would you really wait until an increase in collision rate has been demonstrated?

    (I would say that I'm sure there are some studies showing increased collision rate and collision risk with these devices, but I don't have links at this point, I'll see if I can find some)
    Chump

    I am going to play Devils advocate here for a minute....

    I know you are a pilot...a three dimensional activity that requires far more skill and attention even in good weather than driving a car.

    Do you talk to the tower on approach?
    Take departure instructions on takeoff?

    Should all pilots be banned from talking while in the air?

    Tom

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Hinderks View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Chump View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by debos View Post
    it does not mean that hands free devices have attributed to increase in collisions....
    ... but given the evidence of effect of use of these devices on driver performance, would you really wait until an increase in collision rate has been demonstrated?

    (I would say that I'm sure there are some studies showing increased collision rate and collision risk with these devices, but I don't have links at this point, I'll see if I can find some)
    Chump

    I am going to play Devils advocate here for a minute....

    I know you are a pilot...a three dimensional activity that requires far more skill and attention even in good weather than driving a car.

    Do you talk to the tower on approach?
    Take departure instructions on takeoff?

    Should all pilots be banned from talking while in the air?

    Tom
    I know what you are getting at. But to answer your question and play along - as you know a conversation with tower on approach or departure is a bit different than a conversation with your significant other about accidentally letting the cat out when you left for work that am (speaking from experience here) or the grocery list on the way home (or what have you)

    Interestingly, commercial air carrier (2 crew) pilots are in fact banned from non-operational related coversation in the cockpit below 10K feet if I recall correctly.
    Last edited by Chump; 17-04-2010 at 10:18 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Hinderks View Post
    I know you are a pilot...a three dimensional activity that requires far more skill and attention even in good weather than driving a car.
    I won't downplay the fact that flying an aircraft takes some skill that can be learned with training, but I think driving a vehicle has become so common to almost everyone that we have completely lost the ability to appreciate the inherent (potential) danger and skill necessary to operate a motor vehicle safely. If we were to log time in vehicles the way we log time in aircraft we all have thousands and probably tens of thousands of hours "driving time" and we have been lulled into a sense of complacency and security in our fully airbagged ABS anti-skid gps rear view camera backup sensor driving machines.

    If we approached driver training the way we approach flight training there may be no need for this thread. Or maybe it is more accurate to say we need to have drivier recurrency training not unlike commercial pilot recurrency training to re-enforce the skills and awareness of rules that we lose over time. Can you imagine needing a sim check-ride every 2 years with a drivier instructor throwing every imaginable emergency and traffic issue at you in a simulator to see how you react? And if you flunk - no licence until you don't flunk!

    "Sorry Tom, you have to drive me to poker tonight, I failed my check ride!"
    Last edited by Chump; 17-04-2010 at 10:48 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by debos View Post
    Well by that same deductive reasoning you could say that because both types of devices effect driver performance in a similar manner and banning one type hasn't been effective then why would banning the other be?

    I'd be interested to see the data.
    I think it is far too early to say banning one type hasn't been effective. It may end up being true, or it may not, but I think it is too early.
    (The other issue may be this: if hands free devices are just as risky, there may in fact be no noticeable change in the statistics until both types of devices are banned.)

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    I certainly don't know how to fly a plane, and I don't drive a car. But I'm guessing when you're flying, there aren't all kinds of vehicles coming from different directions, and pedestrians, etc. At least I hope not, or I'm never getting on another plane.

    And the person on the phone isn't helping me navigate, while clearing the way, ensuring there aren't any drivers getting in my way.

    But I get your point, I think.

    I understand and agree that it seems there is too much banning going on sometimes. And it would seem common sense that someone driving a car, or piloting a plane, should be paying attention to what they are doing. I also think the current law regarding due care and attention, if enforced (or enforceable) should cover this.

    But, unfortunately, relying on people to stick to driving when they are driving isn't working. The people doing the dumb things that defy common sense aren't dumb people - it's otherwise smart people doing these things. That's part of the problem in a way. They think the accidents happen to other people - the dumb people.

    And the tragedies that come from these smart people doing dumb things aren't just limited to the victims.

    I hope this legislation is expanded to hands free, and that it goes through. The most important part for me is making it unacceptable behaviour in most people's minds.

    At risk of seeming to downplay the issue of distracted driving, an issue close to my heart, I have seen lots of people use cell phones while driving without a problem. And I've seen people without any discernible distraction drive as if they were in a dream land. I wish there was a law or legislation that would ensure everyone drives well.
    aka Jim Good; "The sooner you fall behind, the more time you have to catch up." - Steven Wright

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    Chump

    Point one...
    "Interestingly, commercial air carrier (2 crew) pilots are in fact banned from non-operational related coversation in the cockpit below 10K feet if I recall correctly."

    Couldn't find that one in the C.A.R.S last night when I read your response so if a company is doing it must be a company mandate.

    Point two
    " If we approached driver training the way we approach flight training there may be no need for this thread."

    The point I was working to...training needs improved and most guys my age will hate it, but driver skill levels are so poor and so little judgment is taught that this is the crux of most problems.

    Banning things and creating new laws will not fix the basic problem.

    Jimbo
    Point one...
    "I certainly don't know how to fly a plane, and I don't drive a car. But I'm guessing when you're flying, there aren't all kinds of vehicles coming from different directions, and pedestrians"

    With the exception of pedestrians yes flying into a busy (not necessarily international) airport is like flying through traffic sometimes...Chicago O'Hare has a take off or landing every 30 seconds...while communicating with each and every aircraft with no issues from communication...many, many airports are just as busy or close to.

    Point two...
    "And the person on the phone isn't helping me navigate, while clearing the way, ensuring there aren't any drivers getting in my way."

    And flying a light aircraft they ain't helping me ether.

    Point three...
    "I understand and agree that it seems there is too much banning going on sometimes. And it would seem common sense that someone driving a car, or piloting a plane, should be paying attention to what they are doing. I also think the current law regarding due care and attention, if enforced (or enforceable) should cover this."

    Now we argree...this is what this law is for and I see on the cover of the Sun today it can be enforced without the need for another big brother law.

    While I support the intent of the law I do do not support the way it is being attempted to be implemented. We do not need another stupid law, we need enforcement of the ones on the books

    Lastly

    I do support enforcing the use of ANY device requiring hands on interaction by the driver...including and not limited to cell phones, GPS, IPODs, MP3s etc. But only if you include all items that include interaction...coffee, Pop, Burgers etc.

    Otherwise use the existing laws with the Police agencies receiving instruction and training to enforce the existing laws through the use of their judgment. As I see in the headline on todays Sun.

    I do not support the banning of hands free.
    I have driven with passengers that didn't know when to shut up, screaming kid(s) and far greater distractions that are never discussed.

    We promote mothers having infants in the middle of the back seat while driving where they are most difficult to deal with fully knowing they will try to.

    Yet we talk about banning a hands free phone??? Not IPODs, MP3s etc??? Talk about selective.

    Again, I agree with the intent of what is proposed, but the method and attempt at implementation is wrong IMO. Use the existing laws and add the police training to use them properly, not playing big brother again.

    You want to do something truly radical and make a real difference...lobby for the implementation of FULL DRIVER TRAINING to include accident avoidance, high speed control, foul weather training and victim advocacy.

    Then you will make a marked and radical change in the way we act on the roads and reduce foolish traffic deaths across the board.

    Tom
    Last edited by Thomas Hinderks; 18-04-2010 at 10:26 AM. Reason: Bolding

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    BTW

    I will actively work with any group that wants to go after this one...

    " You want to do something truly radical and make a real difference...lobby for the implementation of FULL DRIVER TRAINING to include accident avoidance, high speed control, foul weather training and victim advocacy."

    Tom

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Hinderks View Post
    ...
    Point three...
    "I understand and agree that it seems there is too much banning going on sometimes. And it would seem common sense that someone driving a car, or piloting a plane, should be paying attention to what they are doing. I also think the current law regarding due care and attention, if enforced (or enforceable) should cover this."

    Now we argree...
    Tom
    "Argree" may be the best word ever invented for internet forums.
    Last edited by Jimbo; 19-04-2010 at 12:32 PM.
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    The problem with simply trying to enforce the existing laws is that they may be too open to interpretation. I mean, what's to say a driver isn't driving with due care or attention until after an accident has already occurred? That's what any new legislation to be trying to do - help cut down on the accidents by making common distractions illegal, giving police the ability to pull over and ticket anyone who is visibly using a device that is known to be a distraction. Sure, it won't catch all cases such as handsfree use, yelling at the kids in the backseat, etc., but it's better than what we have in place now which seems completely ineffectual so far.
    Strathcona City Separatist

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    RTA

    Which is why I included these comments...

    "Otherwise use the existing laws with the Police agencies receiving instruction and training to enforce the existing laws through the use of their judgment. As I see in the headline on todays Sun."

    "Use the existing laws and add the police training to use them properly, not playing big brother again."

    Which would give police and the courts system clear direction, the training and mandate to achieve the goals.

    Tom

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    Quote Originally Posted by debos
    Marcel: Correlation does not imply causation. This means that while hand held and hands free devices have been shown to detract from a persons concentration in similar fashion (thanks for the links Chump) it does not mean that hands free devices have attributed to increase in collisions. You would require separate and direct research to prove that.
    The legislation is intended to reduce collisions caused by driver distraction. Research quite readily demonstrates there is no difference whatsoever between handsets and handsfree conversations. It is therefore fundamentally flawed legislation.

    As far as your link goes, I guess that's nice, but what exactly was the point of including it?

    Quote Originally Posted by moahunter
    Slipping and pouring hot coffee on yourself does as well, it is even more dangerous. I wonder how long before a police sting outside a Tim Hortons is set up?
    We largely agree here. If there is too high of a burden of proof required to charge someone with driving without due care and attention, then change THAT particular section of the code and start ticketing everyone for anything that constitutes a distraction, if they distracted enough to not be able to drive safely.

    This legislation is a red herring. It will do nothing to reduce collisions, just like every other cell phone ban in other jurisdictions has done precisely nothing to reduce them.

    Basically I agree with Tom's post in full.

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    Tom:

    I agree with the training point (see my posts)

    Regarding more laws and trying to rely on the "driving with due care and attention" law only: look at Occupational Health and Safety law. Most Provinces have what is called a "General Duty" clause. "All employers are required to protect the health and safety of their workers" (the wording from Province to Province varies but that is the main message). So why don't we stop there? The general duty clause should cover most things. General rules are good, and help with enforcement, because clearly not every imaginable circumstance and issue can be regulated. However, some things just need to be spelled out for people, in black and white, IMO. Not for every driver, but for some (many).

    I agree with the notion that we can't regulate against every distraction - that is why the "due care and attention" law is there. I just agree cell phones are worthy of being singled out.

    The sterile cockpit rule is an FAA regulation. I didn't know it wasn't a CARS reg.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sterile_Cockpit_Rule
    Last edited by Chump; 19-04-2010 at 12:40 PM.

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    This isn't about driving skills, or training, really. It's about using common sense. Whether it's driving with a cellphone glued to your ear, doing your makeup in the rear view mirror, or spreading the mustard on your hotdog while balancing a pop on your knees, all the driver training in the world isn't going to keep people from doing really dumb things.

    It's either going to take an accident, or, a better option, a hit to the pocketbook. Some people won't stop what they obviously consider a harmless activity until they pay a price. Unfortunately in the former instance, an accident, it's often not only the driver who ends up paying the price, which is one reason the former is preferable.

    We don't need to be told paying attention is important. Any driver should already know that. Too many people consider distracted driving to be a minor transgression, similar to how drunk driving was viewed 40 years ago. That's what needs to change, and I think these tickets and fines will help people get the message.

    And too many see driving a motor vehicle as a birthright, but not a responsibility. Unlike, for example, piloting a plane. That's where I get where Tom is coming from.
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    Jimbo

    "This isn't about driving skills, or training, really."

    We disagree...this is all about driver skills and training. Properly trained drivers have the knowledge and the skills to make good judgments and understand the results of their actions.

    I will use the example of Tuner street racers...they think they can drive.

    A number of years ago I had one of these hot shots in the RH seat of a GT2 Road Racer for a few laps. You should see the size his eyes got and the shakes as we paced through lines of cars on the track.

    He no longer street races but is a very successful amateur race driver on the coast.

    He needed a lesson in speed and control to get the message.

    Tom

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    I'm not arguing that training isn't an issue, just that it's a separate issue from doing something like fixing one's makeup in the rear view mirror while driving. That's just plain dumb. Heaven help us if we need to train people about that.
    aka Jim Good; "The sooner you fall behind, the more time you have to catch up." - Steven Wright

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    Hey Jimbo
    "I'm not arguing that training isn't an issue, just that it's a separate issue from doing something like fixing one's makeup in the rear view mirror while driving."

    Thats why training is so important and the consequences of stupid actions need to be part of the training.

    In your example...would she still do it if she realized that at 50km/hr she was traveling at roughly 14 meters per second and if she had to physically look at a car that wrecked at 50km...maybe, but a lot less likely.

    I have found most people don't realize what the results of stupid behind the wheel are, which is why our driver training system doesn't stop many of the dumb things we see.

    Fix the system of training and licensing and most of the dumb stuff will stop.

    Tom

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