wherein just enacting a law provides zero deterrent value.

in case you hadn’t hear, georgia’s new “no texting and driving” law took effect today. it just so happened that today was also one of the rare days where i actually pointed my car north and drove from grant park to alpharetta to go to work.

so my frontline report from ga 400 north is this; apparently no one really cares that texting, emailing and updating facebook and twitter from the highway are now against the law. if anything it seemed lilke MORE people were typing on their phones. of course that could just be me paying a little more attention.

of course, announcing you aren’t going to be enforcing the law probably doesn’t help either.

3 Comments so far

  1. abby on July 1st, 2010 @ 11:35 am

    I’d venture a guess that the phenomenon is more you paying attention (I assume you’re not generally looking at other drivers if you’re sitting on the train/bus). Someone did mention on twitter today that there are “four cops at West Peachtree & 17th, with cameras, waiting to catch you.”

    This law is going to be ridiculously difficult to enforce, though it sounds like it will serve more as an additional charge for someone who causes an accident than a stand-alone violation. Despite my tendency towards libertarianism, I’m inclined to think that GA should go ahead and enact hands-free legislation. In states that have those laws on the books, they’re seeing culture shifts away from being on the phone and driving a car. People just don’t do it, because they don’t want to pay a fine.

    Baby steps for us, though. I guess it’s a start.

  2. Stephanie (locaboca) on July 1st, 2010 @ 4:41 pm

    I was one of the few people who probably made the conscious effort not to text and/or Facebook while on the road today. I even found myself actually calling the boyfriend this morning from the car to remind him to return a DVD instead of texting him. I vow to at least try to do better.

    With all the focus on texting legislation, I’m still curious to hear how all of the pickup truck drivers did today having to wear their seatbelts. LOL I heard on the news this morning that we’re the last state to make pickup truck drivers legally have to wear seatbelts. The DJ even made a comment about Alabama beating us on this one.

    But oh wait, they’re not going to enforce that one for a month either, are they?

  3. Sarah (swampgravy) on July 1st, 2010 @ 4:56 pm

    At first I wanted to know how they would determine that I was texting, versus checking my GPS (which is the *only* thing I do in traffic). Then I read that the law makes pretty much having a phone in your hand while driving illegal.

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