New system puts the brake on mobile phone use while driving
By now, everyone should know that using your mobile phone while driving is dangerous. Yet, when hitting the road the chances are you’ll still see someone holding a phone to their ear while behind the wheel. Researchers in India are aiming to take away the ability for drivers to chat on the phone altogether by developing a system that blocks the a driver's mobile phone signal, while not affecting the phones of other passengers in the vehicle.
The researchers from India's Anna University of Technology in Tamilnadu point out that around 20 percent of fatal road accidents with trucks and other heavy vehicles globally involve drivers who have been operating a mobile phone at the time of the accident. It isn’t only the dialing and holding the phone, but also the conversations themselves that can take drivers’ attention off the road. This means that both in-hand and hands-free mobile phone use increase the chances of an accident occurring. They also delay reactions at intersections, cause lane drifting and result in drivers shortening the gap between their vehicle and the one in front.
To put a stop to this kind of behavior, the research team has devised a system that determines whether the person behind the wheel is using a mobile phone while the vehicle is in motion and triggers a mobile jammer that will block the phone signals. Because the jammer is only low-range, the team says other passengers in the vehicle will be able to continue using their phones.
With using a mobile phone while driving illegal in many places around the world, the team says the system could also be adapted to report traffic infringements to the police. In such cases, an RFID tag would store details of the infringement, along with the vehicle’s registration details, and transmit them to a traffic signal post where police could access the information. Alternatively, the system could provide the driver with an alert when they attempt to use a phone.
The team’s system, which is primarily targeted at drivers of heavy vehicles, is described in a paper in the International Journal of Enterprise Network Management.
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With these current cell phone laws you could be driving down the road and see a house on fire, but you can't call 911 because it's technically illegal to use a phone while driving. What about using hands free devices? Will they not work - how will the technology stop headphone or bluetooth systems?
If it's so dangerous to talk on the phone and drive why do police have radios?
I don't like people holding phones to their ears, but what is required is laws requiring hands-free devices, not a phone ban. I've used a hands-free device for years and I can tell you beyond any doubt whatsoever that it's more dangerous for me to have a conversation with someone sitting beside me in the passenger's seat than it is to talk on a cell phone with my earpiece. While talking on a phone (WITH a hands-free device) I keep my hands on the wheel and my eyes on the road. When talking to people sitting next to me, there's always the natural polite behavior of looking over at them from time to time. It's natural and you don't even realize you're doing it most of the time.
Talking with a hands-free device is also safer than drinking or eating while driving, putting on makeup while driving, switching CD's while driving and any number of things that people do constantly.
I hate law-making-by-idiot, which is how it usually tends to be done. And most of the band-wagon cows on this planet tend to just jump on the popular wagon without actually using their grey-matter to determine if the legislation actually makes sense or not.
This is the idiots answer. You will simply see people trying to drive from the wrong seat! The real answer is simply press charges. MAKE PEOPLE DO THE TIME. Charge them properly with the crimes they commit, reckless endangerment, unassured clear distance, etc. We do not need new laws, we need enforcement of the rules we already have. There are way too many laws now.
There are more important things to worry about.
I'd like to see more effort going into stopping drunk drivers, or sleepy drivers.