One great thing about being a cabinet secretary is you get a car and driver. It’s great because you can then propose banning the driver’s use of cell phone use and not have to worry being a hypocrite.
Banning all cell phone use is exactly what the Honorable Ray LaHood seems to be proposing. In an article that ran in Automotive News, LaHood compares cell phone use to drunk driving and seat belt use. (Seriously)
I get that drivers need to pay attention. Accidents and injuries caused by driver distraction are a bad thing. But as Automotive News notes, even the IIHS has said that LaHood is focusing too much attention on distracted driving instead of other safety pursuits.
So what is LaHood really up to? Perhaps burnishing his safety credentials for his post DoT career?
It is hard to say for sure. One thing I can say: If he is really serious about driver distractions, why stop at cell phones? Why not go all the way and ban other forms of distractions a well?
And what could be more of a distraction than turning to talk with a passenger? Why not ban passengers?
After all, when you are being chauffeured to work, what is the downside?
You can read the Automotive News piece here.