DOTSec: Let’s disable cellphones in cars

by Walter Olson on November 17, 2010

Sacrificing not only passenger convenience, but also important elements of emergency response and crime prevention, to the Government That Knows Best: “Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said using a cell phone while driving is so dangerous that devices may soon be installed in cars to forcibly stop drivers — and potentially anyone else in the vehicle — from using them.” [Daily Caller, earlier] Post-furor update: DOT “currently has no plans” to do this.

{ 14 comments }

1 rogers turner,jr. 11.17.10 at 10:35 am

Why stop there? Disable all car stereos as well.

2 gitarcarver 11.17.10 at 10:59 am

Disable wives / husbands that nag from the front seat and tell you how to drive. ;)

3 GregS 11.17.10 at 11:02 am

Great way to encourage motorists to keep driving their older cars, instead of buying a new one.

4 wfjag 11.17.10 at 11:18 am

The administration should just keep following its economic policies that discourage domestic energy production and devaluing the dollar which makes imports more expensive, and the price of gas will go up enough that no one will be able to afford to drive. Problem solved.

5 E Garland 11.17.10 at 12:00 pm

I can only note that, based on the numbers I’ve seen, more accidents are still directly attributed to alcohol/drug imparment or speeding than cellphones…

Hence, to prevent/diminish such accidents, all cars should be electronically governed to 55 mph or less, and require a blood sample to operate…

6 John 11.17.10 at 3:19 pm

how will I report my runaway Toyota?

7 Mannie 11.17.10 at 3:50 pm

Let’s just disable Ray LaHood.

8 marco73 11.17.10 at 4:47 pm

Every time Ray LaHood opens his mouth, he reinforces the founding father’s principles of limited government.

9 Aaron Worthing 11.17.10 at 4:55 pm

hot air has a thorough take down, but i don’t recall them mentioning the need for emergency use.

one of their better points: how do they plan on keeping you from disabling or removing the device?

by forcing you to submit to inspections? or just hoping you won’t do it.

10 Uno Hu 11.17.10 at 5:03 pm

Better yet, between mandated mileages standards that will jack prices and require thoroughly undesirable ride and peformance characteristics to meet, let them mandate cell phone inactivators in all new cars. What in the world makes them think I’ll trade in the comfortable, relatively peppy sedan I have now for one of their expensive econo-boxes?

11 VMS 11.17.10 at 6:16 pm

The structure of state vehicle and traffic law penalties (fines and points on the license) seems to be in proportion to the seriousness of the offense. DWI> DWAI > speeding > etc., with illegal cell phone use on the bottom of the totum pole.

12 Richard Nieporent 11.17.10 at 7:06 pm

Besides the obvious stupidity of doing this, it also violates the FCC rule that makes cell phone jammers illegal. That is why movie theaters have to ask you to turn off your cell phone. They are not allowed to jam the signal.

13 Doug 11.17.10 at 8:12 pm

The jurisdiction of the FCC is the first thing I thought of when I read this. But, don’t worry, the Dept of Transportation and the FCC will sue each over this with the taxpayers paying the bill.

14 DensityDuck 11.18.10 at 12:06 pm

Will we also make it a Federal law that you have to move over when someone’s behind you regardless of your current speed?

How about a law making it a felony to stop at an on-ramp or merge at speeds less than 80% of the posted speed limit?

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