There’s a time and place for everything. This is especially true for smartphone use.
No business meeting is convened today before attendees are reminded to turn off or silence their phones. Meanwhile, the devices have also become a disruptive force in the classroom, and more than one romantic dinner has been spoiled by an untimely text message.
But the use of hand-held devices may be most problematic behind the wheel.
The National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA) has linked thousands of fatalities and many more injuries to distracted driving. Such grim statistics have led to the designation of April as Distracted Driving Month.
Additional insight from NHTSA’s National Occupant Protection Use Survey indicates an upward trend among drivers seen visibly manipulating hand-held devices while behind the wheel. This behavior was “significantly higher” among drivers aged 16 to 24.
FCA US LLC – the first automaker to prohibit employees from using hand-held devices to text while driving – urges all motorists to:
- store their devices when getting into their vehicles
- leave them stored until their journeys are complete
- use hands-free communication technology, as needed, en route
Historically, many who have heeded this advice have co-opted their cupholders. But FCA US vehicles, ranging from the 2016 Ram Rebel pickup to the all-new 2017 Chrysler Pacifica minivan, feature purpose-built spaces for drivers to store their smartphones, mini-tablets, etc., and save those cupholders for their intended use.