[Spencer Daily Reporter nameplate] Overcast ~ 43°F  
High: 56°F ~ Low: 23°F
Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014

Continue to get your texts while driving, even with the new law!

Posted Thursday, July 1, 2010, at 9:41 AM

I covered this once before in another blog, but with the new law going into effect today, perhaps more people will be interested.

I downloaded a phone app that reads all of my texts and emails aloud. There is a FREE version for both Android and BlackBerry phones! You can pay a little extra to get a version with more features. Just go to http://www.drivesafe.ly! You can even set it to autoreply that you are driving and can't reply immediately. That way nobody will panic if they don't hear from you within three minutes.

I love Drivesafe.ly! I hope that everybody checks it out. Not only will it allow you to abide by the new law, it may save lives.


Comments
Showing comments in chronological order
[Show most recent comments first]

I just sat through a demonstration by the Iowa Hwy Patrol for my son's Driver's Ed class. They sited several graphic examples of the results of distracted driving including but not limited to cell phones -- whether they are answered or not answered, hands free or not hands free. The results were the same - distracted driving is a hazard, a very serious hazard. There is NOTHING so important that it cannot wait until you reach your destination. We used to live and drive without cell phones for many, many years, I think it can be done again. I choose to simply shut mine off from now on.

-- Posted by Leah Cauthron on Thu, Jul 1, 2010, at 1:48 PM

So, do you also drive without the radio on? Or if there is somebody else in the car with you, do you demand complete silence?

I personally don't see the difference between talking to my husband on a bluetooth headset or when he's sitting in the passenger seat other than the fact that with the headset I don't have to worry about him blocking my view.

-- Posted by stafinois on Thu, Jul 1, 2010, at 2:40 PM

Music can play in the background and not be a distraction but talking and getting involved in a conversation on a cell phone has been proven to be hazardous. Call Trooper Steinkamp and ask him to tell you some stories about the outcome of these distractions. He has had to deliver the bad news to many families.

-- Posted by Leah Cauthron on Thu, Jul 1, 2010, at 4:12 PM

But as I said, the same could be said of a conversation with a passenger in your car. What makes a conversation on a hands-free device more dangerous than a conversation with a passenger in your car?

-- Posted by stafinois on Thu, Jul 1, 2010, at 6:17 PM

Isn't a crying baby in the back seat a distraction too? Or people that carry their lap dogs on their laps while driving? I find talking on a hands free headset to be a LOT less distracting than other things. The application is meant to make things safer. Until they ban screaming children, parents arguing, animals in the front seat able to hop back and forth freely and ban all radios/cd players/gps units etc I won't complain about the cell phone usage. (I am glad, though, they banned texting.) In a perfect world we could go without cell phones but with the technology of cell phones there comes more and more people that live out of their vehicles with work, children and life in general. Cell phone usage is the highest it has ever been (and may ever be) as some people do not even have a landline anymore! People just have to use it responsibly. So unless your vehicle is so quiet you can hear a pin drop I think the hands free headsets and drivesafe.ly application is the best answer!

-- Posted by jusamom on Fri, Jul 2, 2010, at 10:47 AM

Agree jusamom!!

-- Posted by Just_Me_In_Spencer on Fri, Jul 2, 2010, at 12:59 PM

It is against the law for kids to hop back & forth. As a matter of fact it is now the law for teens to buckle up in the backseat as well as the front. Talk to the State Troopers about the accidents they have seen and then decide. The best answer is just refrain from everything but driving while driving.

-- Posted by Leah Cauthron on Fri, Jul 2, 2010, at 12:59 PM

Leah-jusamom did not refer to children hopping back and forth, but rather animals.

-- Posted by band-aid on Fri, Jul 2, 2010, at 1:15 PM

I've seen multiple young kids driving there mopeds talking on there cell phones. And texting while driving there moped...I hope something gets done about that. It needs to stopped before someone gets killed.

-- Posted by TomMorse on Fri, Jul 2, 2010, at 4:37 PM

Oh, my, would much rather meet a driver talking on phone than meet a driver with a DOG on their laps blocking their view. A lady at the bank today had a dog on her lap in the drive-thru; she was blocking traffic in all 3 lanes because of her dog. Next time leave them home or restrain them in the back seat...in an accident they can become projectiles that can hurt you and them.

-- Posted by kayd on Fri, Jul 2, 2010, at 8:08 PM

Perhaps I'll start gagging my family when we are in the car. That will go over well.

-- Posted by stafinois on Sat, Jul 3, 2010, at 10:45 AM

LOL, Aimee...

-- Posted by notinia on Sat, Jul 3, 2010, at 4:37 PM

I am in favor of banning use while driving of any electronic devices not installed permanently to a vehicle. Including but not limited to cell phones, hands free or otherwise, MP3's, radar detectors, GPS's, etc. as well as ticketing anyone else doing anything instead of driving i.e. applying makeup, smoking, eating etc. And it should go to ALL drivers not just young drivers. We are not perfect in our vehicle but it can be often heard, "Not now, I'm driving." in response to a request. I have become adept to tuning them out when driving as well. Not perfect but working on it.

-- Posted by Leah Cauthron on Sat, Jul 3, 2010, at 8:05 PM

Leah, I don't see the difference between listening to an MP3 through the speakers of your car and listening to the radio. I also don't see the difference between talking on a hands-free and talking to passengers in your car. And where would you like to use a GPS except in a car?? Try living in Europe- its extremely difficult to navigate around without one. I'd say 99% of the cars you pass on the road have them here. It's not as cut-and-dried as you try to make it.

-- Posted by notinia on Sun, Jul 4, 2010, at 11:15 AM

I think the texting ban was a "feel good" law and nothing else. A real law would have been a distracted driver law. This law would not necessarily ban anything, but it would increase the fines for violations committed while distracted. Speeding while eating a cheeseburger? The fine is increased. Swerving while putting on makeup? The fine is increased. Causing a wreck while on a cell phone? Well, you get the point. I don't think this is a perfect solution either (mostly because perfect solutions don't exist) but I think it would attempt to address the entire issue, rather than singling out technology users just to feel like the problem is solved.

I think we have become a generation of multitasking drivers. Some can do it, some cannot. I, for one, am very bad at "just driving." If I'm driving alone and not on the phone, I'm either dancing to my music (I once performed a modified version of the Cha Cha Slide while driving down Highway 20), gawking at the landscape or enjoying some sort of food and or beverage. At the very least, I play the farmers' wave game with the drivers I pass. I'm not saying that everything I do while I'm driving is completely correct or safe all the time. What I am saying is that all drivers are different. Some can multitask and others should keep their hands at 10 and 2.

Bottom line? Legislating against one part of a multifaceted problem and feeling good about it cannot and should not be considered the total solution.

I almost forgot to thank Aimee for the information. I don't have a fancy phone like that, but if I did, drivesafe.ly would come in very handy.

-- Posted by Gabe Licht on Mon, Jul 5, 2010, at 11:00 AM

what about texting, while driving combines and tractors in the fields?? A very important and relevant issue to the area, IMO.

on my way to start my movement...farmers beware!

-- Posted by Bansky on Wed, Jul 7, 2010, at 12:16 PM

Haha, Bansky. What else are farmers supposed to do while their equipment drives itself?

-- Posted by Gabe Licht on Wed, Jul 7, 2010, at 12:48 PM

americans have a lot to do during every minute of every day. many dont wish to sacrifice that time in the car. our modern times considers time sitting idle as wasted (thanks to the lessons from our parents, the baby boomers). perhaps the solution to the problem is not to decrease our distractions while driving but to decrease the human control over driving. computers are not distracted by friends facebook updates.

this may sound like an isaac asimov novel, but i believe that the safest ways for humans to operate machines is for them to not.

how long until sensors which warn the operator of close objects, ones which pick out red lights and auto slow your vehicle, and the best communication between computer systems in surrounding vehicles?

this may sound crazy but consider it because driving is no longer a privilege its a chore.

-- Posted by zlastone on Wed, Jul 7, 2010, at 8:32 PM

I have a new distracted driver for you...I was behind a guy tonight who opened his door about every 500 yards to spit his chew on the highway. Yes, he was driving. What an idiot!

-- Posted by Leah Cauthron on Mon, Jul 12, 2010, at 9:34 PM

I can live with the hands free stuff if I have to, as long as it stays hands off.

Two weeks ago my buddy was riding his bike to work and a lady almost ran him over because she was playing on her cell phone. He got scraped up pretty good. She stopped and he let it go, but it shook her up pretty bad, and he's still a bit paranoid of intersections now.

-- Posted by dbaymiller on Fri, Jul 16, 2010, at 11:07 PM

I have used the Drivesafe free version and will likely use the upgraded version for purchase it worked very well! Scared me the first time it started talking to me! HA!

-- Posted by krisv on Mon, Jul 19, 2010, at 10:02 AM

The same argument comes up over and over...what if there is a passenger in the car blah blah blah..Um the last time I checked most passengers have eyes and ears. They usually are paying attention to the road. They want to get to the destination also. There is the big difference between talking on the cell and having a passenger. Now some will say not all passengers are paying attention. While that is true I have this to say. When my son is in the back seat and is talking to me asking questions and traffic starts to get hectic I tell him to be quiet because there is a lot of traffic. Done deal.

-- Posted by daronmeyer on Wed, Aug 4, 2010, at 7:28 AM

People driving while texting is equal to driving while drunk. Texting takes more time and effort. Yes, some kids can do it, because they have practiced for so long. I heard somewhere that this law isn't going to take effect until July of 2011 for some Police Departments in Iowa.

Here's a idea turn off your phone if you know your going to have distractions in the vehicle and if you have a emergency, pull over to the side of the road, if possible. Turn on your cell phone and call someone for help. Especially when it's blowing snow and drifting everywhere. Texting shouldn't be done while that is going on (kids do, do that). Since snow is here in Iowa lol 1/2 of the year.

Aimee Clark I'm sorry for saying crap on the Festival of Tree's against you. I wasn't trying to make you feel bad! I used you as a bad example on things, and a escape goat as well. I didn't mean it in the way I stated it towards you. I'm pretty sure you are a upstanding citizen of Spencer as well!

-- Posted by SystemofaDown on Fri, Nov 12, 2010, at 12:36 AM


Respond to this blog

Posting a comment requires free registration. If you already have an account, enter your username and password below. Otherwise, click here to register.

Username:

Password:  (Forgot your password?)

Your comments:
Please be respectful of others and try to stay on topic.


Aimee graduated from Spencer High School in 1994, and then moved to a large city on the west coast. She returned to Spencer in 2007. Aimee spent more than a decade in veterinary medicine and dog training, and now works in a public library. She lives with her husband, daughter, two dogs, and a cat.
Hot topics
The Hazardous Life of a Pedestrian
(1 ~ 3:25 PM, May 2)

Discrimination is the Pits
(4 ~ 9:50 AM, Jan 8)

Subway's Sportsman of the Year and the New Face of Nike
(8 ~ 12:33 PM, Jul 12)

Birthers and Balderdash
(13 ~ 8:08 PM, May 4)

Courteous Winter Driving
(3 ~ 7:13 PM, Feb 3)