Ban the wireless
The time has come for responsible driving. Starting on October 26, 2009, all Ontario drivers must refrain from using any hand held devices while driving. This includes talking and texting on cell phones, sending e-mails from wireless devices, using MP3’s and hand held games; all while driving. The Ontario government has decided that most drivers can’t make a logical decision and act like an adult while behind the wheel, so they’ve had to be the “parent” here and make it into a law. I agree with them.
How many drivers will respect the law and how many will ignore it? I believe the people who are traditional rule followers will put their phones away. They’ll probably be disappointed about it, but we can’t always like everything that is a law. There may not be a lot of people who will be a law abiding driver, but every little bit helps. Once the fines kick into place, I’m sure more people will put their phones away. They’re the type of people that are afraid to get caught.
There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t come across someone who’s on their phone and can’t drive safely. I often have to run out of the crosswalk when I’m a pedestrian because they can’t divide their attention from their conversation and their driving. These are the people that the law was geared towards.
To allow us to follow this law, we may need some help to avoid using these devices while driving. I would suggest putting your phone on silent so you don’t know when someone has sent you a text or a call. This will help you stay focused on your driving and reduce the distraction of the phone. If there are people who will call you while you’re driving, ask them to send you a text or e-mail instead. This will give you the opportunity to read it after you’ve arrived at your destination and parked your vehicle. It’s a better solution than the phone call since you would want to answer that immediately.
Another suggestion is to put the phone in your jacket or purse so you’re not tempted to check it from time to time. Out of sight; out of mind. Set up new rules for you to have as a driver. Remember, your passengers can always help you and send the text or phone call instead of you doing it. I’ve done that when my son is in the car with me. I’ll ask ham to make a call or send a text message to his mom. It’s a simpler solution than me doing it and it’s much safer.
This new law is all about safety; driver and passenger safety along with pedestrian safety. Habits are never eliminated; they are replaced by another habit. All we have to do now is focus on driving, and do our talking later.