ONE TEXT OR CALL COULD WRECK IT ALL

Posted about 2 years ago. Applies to Las Vegas, NV, 4 helpful votes

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Handheld ban for all drivers (Primary law) effective 1/1/12

Cell, texting news: Nevada's new prohibitions against driving while texting and using handheld cell phones are in full effect. Fines are $50 (first offense), then $100 (second) and then $250 (subsequent violations). Enforcement of the Nevada bans is primary, meaning drivers can be stopped and cited for that reason alone. Cell phone use is allowed only if a hands-free accessory is employed throughout the call. Here is the exact wording of the new bans: Drivers cannot: "Manually type or enter text into a cellular telephone or other handheld wireless communications device, or send or read data using any such device to access or search the Internet or to engage in non-voice communications with another person, including, without limitation, texting, electronic messaging and instant messaging." Drivers cannot: "Use a cellular telephone or other handheld wireless communications device to engage in voice communications with another person.

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Nevada was the 34th state to ban texting while driving

Key provisions: First offenses are not considered moving violations. Laws do not apply to GPS systems "affixed to the vehicle." Previous infractions do not affect new fines after seven years. Example: A repeat violator would be considered a first offender if seven years have passed since the original conviction. Licensed two-way radio use is permissible if the unit is not hand held, except for the microphone. Nevada was the 34th state to ban texting while driving. Current prohibitions: All drivers are barred from using handheld cell phones. Text messaging and related activities prohibited for all drivers. Distracted driving notes (2012): The Henderson Police Department reports it handed out 351 citations for using handheld devices during the ban's first month.

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Nevada DOT says there are more than 3,500 distraction-related crashes in the state every year

Distracted driving notes (2012): The Henderson Police Department reports it handed out 351 citations for using handheld devices during the ban's first month. The Nevada DOT says there are more than 3,500 distraction-related crashes in the state every year, with more than 60 deaths reported in the past five years. Its advice for avoiding cell phone tickets? "Before driving, secure your cellphone in a place such as the glove box where you will not be able or tempted to access it while driving."

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Fines

SB 140: Would outlaw text messaging and using handheld cell phones while driving in Nevada. Would prevent cities and counties from creating similar laws. Original bill's fines: $250 (first offense), then $500, then $1,000 plus license suspension of six months. Fines doubled in highway work zones. Warnings until Jan. 1, 2012. Amended and approved by the Senate Transportation Committee on March 17. Amendments approved by voice vote in Senate on April 22. Amended bill's fines: $50/$100/$250. No license suspensions. Approved by the Senate in a 12-9 vote on April 26. OK'd by the Assembly in a 24-7 vote on May 30. The Senate's final approval (a voice vote) came June 4 and the measure was then approved by the governor. A warning period began Oct. 1 and the prohibitions went into full effect Jan. 1, 2012.

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Ban on text messaging and use of handheld cell phones while driving in Nevada

AB 151: Would ban text messaging and use of handheld cell phones while driving in Nevada. Fines: $50 (first offense), $100 (second) and $250 (third). If a death or "substantial body harm" results from violation, prison term of 1-6 years with fines of $2,000-$5,000. Would end local traffic regulation of texting and cell phones. Warnings until Dec. 31, 2011. Amended (to add handheld cell phones to original bill's texting ban) and approved by the Assembly Committee on Transportation in a 12-3 vote on March 29. Latest legislative action: Rereferred to Committee on Ways and Means on April 19. See SB 140, above.

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Distracted driving can be defined as doing other activities such as using a cell phone

Distracted driving can be defined as doing other activities such as using a cell phone, texting, eating, or reading while driving. These activities take the driver's attention away from the road causing driving to become secondary in importance to the other activities happening inside the vehicle while in motion There are three types of distractions that may occur while driving including visual, manual, and cognitive distraction; all which compromise the safety of the driver, passengers, bystanders, and other individuals on the road. Visual distraction is taking one's eyes off the road, manual distraction is the act of taking one's hands off the wheel, and cognitive distraction occurs when an individual takes their mind off the basic task of driving

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text messaging while driving creates a crash risk 23 times higher than driving while not distracted

Text messaging requires visual, manual, and cognitive attention of the driver, thus making it the most alarming distraction so far.According to United States Department of Transportation, "text messaging while driving creates a crash risk 23 times higher than driving while not distractedDespite these statistics, over 1/3 of drivers (37%) have sent or received text messages while driving, and 18% said they do it Since texting while driving is becoming a more common phenomenon on the road, distracted driving is a replacement phrase for the more popular terms "texting while driving"

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Report on distracted driving fatalities for 2009

In September 2010, the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released a report on distracted driving fatalities for 2009. The NHTSA considers distracted driving to include some of the following as distractions: other occupants in the car, eating, drinking, smoking, adjusting radio, adjusting environmental control, reaching for objects in car, and cell phone use. The report stated that 5,474 people were killed and 448,000 individuals were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers. Of those individuals killed, 995 were believed to be killed by drivers distracted by cell phones. The report does not state whether this is an under or over representation of the level of cell phone use amongst drivers, or whether there is a causal relationship

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The rising annual rate of fatalities from distracted driving corresponds to the number of cell phone subscriptions

The rising annual rate of fatalities from distracted driving corresponds to the number of cell phone subscriptions per capita and the average number of text messages per month. From 2009 to 2011, the amount of text messages sent has increased by nearly 50%. Offenders of distracted driving are more likely to report driving while drowsy, going 20 miles-per-hour over the speed limit, driving aggressively, not stopping at a red light or stop sign, and driving under the influence of alcohol .The Automobile Association of America (AAA), reports that younger drivers were overwhelmingly more likely than older drivers to text message and talk on cell phones while driving. However, the proportion of drivers aged 35 to 44 who reported talking on cell phones while driving is not significantly lower than those drivers aged 18 to 24 who report doing so

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Most of the collisions and near misses that occur involve inattention as a contributing factor

In 2011,a large naturalistic study of in field operational tests on cars, heavy product vehicles, and commercial vehicles and buses and concluded that: (a) Most of the collisions and near misses that occur involve inattention as a contributing factor (b) Visual inattention (looking away from the road scene), is the single most significant factor contributing to crash and near crash involvement (c) Cognitive distraction associated with listening to or talking on a handheld or hands-free device is associated with real world crashes and near miss events to a lesser extent than is commonly believed, and such distractions may even enhance safety in some instances

Additional Resources

Howard Roitman, Esq. 8921 W. Sahara Ave. Las Vegas, NV 89117 (702) 647-8550

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