Secretary of Transportation intervenes when D.C. residents talk or text while driving


Secretary of Transportation, Ray LaHood, reports to WTOP on his informal road patrols in the District. “I drive around on the weekends in Washington,” LaHood said. He reported that people who are speaking on a cellphone while driving are “my biggest source of irritation.” He said, “What I’ve been doing is kind of honking at somebody if I see him on a cellphone.” LaHood views his behavior as a way of “taking personal responsibility” to lessen distractions from drivers.

According to the National Transportation Safety Board, texting while driving increased by 50 percent in 2010. There were about 3,092 deaths in crashes in 2010, which involved driver distractions. There are currently 35 states and the District that ban texting while driving, and nine states and the District ban hand-held cellphone usage. Cellphone usage for new drivers is prohibited in 30 states.


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