The Federal Government Seeks to Extend Commercial Driver Texting Ban

A few weeks ago we posted about Illinois’ ban of texting while driving and noted that more and more jurisdictions are cracking down on this dangerous practice.

And, as the New York Times reports, the Federal Government is now joining the band wagon and is proposing that a recently enacted ban on texting by commercial drivers be made permanent. As explained in the article, commercial transportation industry officials support the ban:

Trucking and bus industry officials have said they support the ban on text-messaging and many companies already have policies. The government prohibition does not apply to onboard devices that allow dispatchers to send text messages to truck drivers, but industry officials say most of the devices have mechanisms preventing their use while a truck is moving.

Texting while driving is a dangerous practice and, as reported in a recent University of Utah study, one that very few individuals–only 2.5% of those who participated in the study can do so safely:

First, at the applied level, our results suggest that the overwhelming majority of people suffer significant bi-directional impairment from using a cell phone while driving. Second, our results suggest that there are supertaskers in our midst: rare but intriguing individuals with extraordinary multi-tasking ability.

The study also noted that most people believe–incorrectly–that they are one of the lucky few who are able to multi-task effectively while driving. This faulty belief is likely the cause of the many accidents occurring on our roadways because of distracted drivers who text while driving.

As we urged in our prior post, don’t text while driving, if for no other reason than the fact that in many jurisdictions, including Illinois, it’s illegal. And, even if it’s not illegal where you live, why risk the safety of you, your loved ones and everyone else on the road? You can send that text once you arrive at your destination. Safety is always more important than convenience.

Howard Ankin of Ankin Law ( handles workers’ compensation and personal injury cases. Mr. Ankin can be reached at (312) 346-8780 and