Driving is one of the most divisive inventions out there. First of all, it greatly improved transport, allowing for far shorter travel times and easing the lives of billions of people. So, its benefits are pretty much indisputable. However, there are enough drawbacks to driving that some are actually considering whether it’s worth it or not.
Aside from the ecological effects, as driving is one of the leading causes of global warming, driving also has a far more macabre aspect to it. One of the leading causes of death in our country is in fact distracted driving. Be it because of drinking before getting in the car or simply being distracted, distracted drivers kill about 3,000 American citizens every year.
And one of the main reasons behind distracted driving, at least according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is cell phone use. In fact, it would seem like cell phone use is responsible for more than a quarter of all traffic accidents in the country, as well as for a similar amount of road fatalities.
Whether they’re being used for texting, browsing social media, playing some music or simply checking the time, cell phones are responsible for the largest spike in vehicle fatalities seen in the past fifty years – a rise of eight percent in the number of people killed by distracted drivers.
So of course, authorities everywhere are looking for a way to prevent any more pointless deaths from happening because of people being unable to get off their cell phones. Expectedly, most of the answers come in the form of apps, software developed to detect or prevent drivers from being distracted by their smart phones.
One of the solutions that seem to be gaining the most traction is the use of a textalyzer that tests for texting and driving. The app would be present on a police officer’s phone and it would be able to detect whether the driver has been using their phone as they were driving. Failure to comply would result in suspension of the driver’s license, similar to refusing a breathalyzer test.
But some are even fighting the legislature allowing police to insist on breathalyzer test, as they claim it defies the Fourth Amendment. So, other parties have come up with their alternatives to stopping texting and driving. And if programmers are just coming up with solutions and taking them to the police, you know that the issue is very serious.
Some of these other options aside from the textalyzer would be a sort of heads up display (HUD) which would project your phone’s screen on the windshield, apps to report anyone you see texting and driving, or a different app which just doesn’t allow you to use your phone while driving.
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