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Phone app can help drivers work with distracted driving laws

Over the past few years, cell phones have become at least as popular as cars in this country. And that is where the problem has presented itself. Distracted driving has become a common factor behind car accidents, or at least a factor that has become the center of spreading traffic laws in Maryland and the rest of the U.S.

As it always does, technology catches up with the needs of the public. For example, Maryland's distracted driving laws say that texting while driving is a traffic violation, and that law has created a need. People want to be able to communicate via text in the car in a legal and safe way. Well, there's reportedly an app for that.

Sources report that Apple provides an app that works as a voice-activated text messaging system. That means that Maryland drivers could use their text messaging systems on their phones while driving without having to rely constantly on typing.

Some wonder, however, whether enough of the distraction is taken out of the process, even with the voice-activated feature. Drivers will still have to press at least a button here and there to get the system started in the car. Plus, the temptation will still be there for drivers to look at the screen in order to read or check for errors.

Distracted driving laws have come about quite quickly throughout the country, and it will be interesting to see whether the laws will change in Maryland or other states to include all types of text messaging, including the voice-activated kind. Some traffic safety activists doubt that the voice-activated app will be much safer than manual texting, leading them to believe that all types of texting behind the wheel should be prohibited.

Do you think that the new hands-free texting app sounds like it's a good idea? Do you think it would be a safer way to text while driving? If laws do change to include hands-free texting under distracted driving laws, we will be sure to write an updated post.


The Montreal Gazette: "Voice-activated iPhone could snarl laws on drivers' texting," Maggie Clark, Oct. 26, 2011

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