If you haven’t heard yet, there is a new Safe Driving Law, or No TWD (Text While Driving) Law in effect in Massachusetts as of September 30, 2010. It is now illegal for anyone to text or use the internet on a cell phone while driving. And for those drivers under 18, cell phone use is banned completely. At Humboldt, our drivers, many of whom are long distance movers, have to be focused on the road at all times. As part of our safety regulations, we train our drivers to pull over to the nearest safety area to make any necessary calls. This way they have minimal driving distractions. When I spoke with a couple of the drivers at our moving company, they said they don’t even know how to text, so the law won’t really affect them. But how does this law affect you as a driver? That depends on how much you currently text or look things up on the internet now. Hear are some statistics collected in a recent study: 91% of drivers feel that they are more likely to get into an accident while reading or typing a text message. 90% feel that reading or typing a text message is just as unsafe as not wearing a seatbelt. 44% have been passengers in a vehicle where the driver was reading or typing a text message and 76% of those passengers felt unsafe. 80% are trying to limit the frequency in which they read or type text messages while driving. When asked if drivers would feel safer if they had the ability to speak text messages into their phones without taking their eyes off the road, 67% said yes, 22% said maybe, while 11% said no. (To see the entire survey, please go to www.vlingo.com/texting-while-driving) If you are planning a move, and driving versus using a Boston Car Shipping service, be aware of the safety laws in the states you will be driving through. Especially if you are taking more than one car, make a plan to stop at certain times to check in. If you need to use your phone you have a couple options: The easiest is to have another passenger in the car call or text or look up whatever information necessary for you. The second would be to pull over at a rest area or other safe area and make your call then. It is always better to be safe than sorry. Taking a few minute break every so often is beneficial to you: You can safely make a phone call If you get out of the car, you can stretch out and feel refreshed. Taking your focus away from driving will help clear your mind and leave you feeling more alert when you start driving again. The consequences for breaking this new TWD law are severe: You can be fined between $100-$500, and loose your license for up to a year! There is already enough stress put on you when you are moving. Is it worth jeopardizing the safety of yourself and your family to send a text? Take the time to pull over and communicate safely. You’ll be glad you did.
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