Study: Crashes in states with cell ban not reduced

086dc9182bb904ef95a8ca9c86f5eb53

A ban on handheld cellphone use in the Bay State is one step closer to law, even though studies have found similar bans in other states aren’t reducing crashes.

Last month, the state legislative Committee on Transportation voted unanimously to support a handheld cellphone ban. The House and Senate still need to vote on the issue.

While momentum builds up locally, the question remains whether a ban would make the roads safer.
A 2010 analysis by the Highway Loss Data Institute, an insurance industry group, looked at whether accident claims went down after the handheld ban went into affect in Connecticut, California, New York and the District of Columbia.

The findings were perplexing, particularly in light of an earlier study by an affiliated group that showed cellphone use in the car was dangerous.

“We called the findings a conundrum. We would have expected to see a decrease in crashes but we didn’t,” said Anne Fleming, spokeswoman for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, a group affiliated with the study. “We and other people have conducted numerous studies based on cellphone records and they established an increased risk using a cellphone. It could be that people who are no longer talking on phones are engaging in another risky practice, like fiddling with the radio or talking to others in the car. It could be the lack of compliance.”

Both Fleming and Jeff Larson, spokesman for the Safe Roads Alliance, a Massachusetts-based advocacy group, agree enforcement is key and that if laws aren’t strengthened then people will not take them seriously.

Groups see law as help to texting ban

Larson, of the Safe Roads Alliance, said they support the ban but primarily to reduce texting while driving.

In 2010, the state Legislature banned texting while driving, but according to Larson, without a hands-free mandate it is close to impossible for authorities to enforce.

“The call for a hands-free requirement is not because there is any change in safety whether you’re holding or not holding the phone while talking. It will give police more chance to crack down on texting,” he said.

Bill has history of failure

In 2010, the state Senate voted 16-18 to defeat a handheld cellphone ban, with opponents contending that holding cellphones aren’t causing accidents, but rather the distraction of the conversation is to blame. shns



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Mutant worms stay sober, even on alcohol

U.S. researchers have developed "mutant worms" that do not get drunk by alcohol, a breakthrough that could lead to new treatment for people trying to quit drinking

Local

K-9 nose helps capture $150K in cocaine at…

A furry, four-legged security agent helped authorities stop an illegal cocaine shipment from sneaking past JFK customs.

National

Minnesota man asked to leave Southwest flight after…

A man and his two sons were asked to leave a Southwest Airlines flight after the man sent a tweet complaining about being treated rudely by a gate agent.

National

Man sues hospital after surprise penis amputation

An Alabama man who went in to a hospital last month for a circumcision awoke after surgery to find his penis had been amputated, his lawyer said on Thursday.

Movies

Review: Brett Ratner's big 'Hercules' movie is small…

The latest "Hercules," starring Dwayne Johnson as the half-god beefcake of Greek myth, strips its hero and tale of most of its fantastical elements.

Arts

Scientists recreate world's smallest Monet copy

Scientists have reproduced a famous Impressionist painting using nano-printing, to create what has been described as the world's smallest work of art. Reworked at the…

Television

Jerry Seinfeld is ambidextrous, and other Reddit AMA…

See some of the weirder highlights of Jerry Seinfeld's recent Reddit AMA.

Going Out

Grab a pedestrian and start dancing at What…

As a New Yorker, I’ve mastered the art of focusing my gaze straight ahead. Though it occasionally piques my interest, the absurdities that play out…

NFL

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player…

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player rankings

U.S. Soccer

NYCFC announce signing of Frank Lampard

The tease of a big signing Thursday by new MLS side NYCFC ended up being one rumored for weeks. England midfielder Frank Lampard agreed to…

NBA

NBA great LeBron James sends 800 cupcake apologies…

By Kim PalmerCLEVELAND (Reuters) - NBA star LeBron James, whose recent return to the Cleveland Cavaliers in his home state of Ohio sparked a frenzy…

NFL

Jerry Reese confident with Giants, skipping countdown clocks…

Last year, Giants GM Jerry Reese installed a countdown clock in the locker room to inspire Big Blue to play in their own stadium for Super Bowl XLVIII.

Tech

Forget Wi-Fi: Li-Fi could be the future

Li-Fi technology – developed by Mexican company Sisoft – is wireless internet connectivity using specialized LED light.

Tech

Weather app Climendo might be the most accurate…

The wait for a truly accurate weather forecast could finally be over thanks to a nifty new app called Climendo.

Tech

Napkin Table puts focus off the phone and…

Michael Jan, a design student at Tunghai University in Taiwan, has invented a serviette-picnic blanket hybrid called the Napkin Table.

Style

Essie's new Color Boutique

Essie launches high-tech kiosks at major airports and malls across the country.