Don’t forget that as of Saturday, October 1st, law enforcement officers in Nevada may stop motorists and give them warnings if they are using handheld cell phones or texting while driving.
The is the beginning of a 3-month warning period, with the issuance of tickets beginning January 1st, 2012 when Nevada’s ban on handheld cell phone use and text messaging goes into effect for all drivers.
Nevada is the 34th state to ban texting while driving and it’s what is known as PRIMARY enforcement, meaning that drivers can be stopped and cited for that reason alone. Tickets for the first offense are $50, the second offense is $100 and then it jumps to $250 on the third offense. [Update: I just saw on the news that although the first fine is only $50…it ends up being over $100 after administrative and court processing fees AND that your license can be revoked on the 3rd offense, FYI.]
By way of statistics, the U.S. National Library of Medicine & National Institute of Health examined trends in distracted driving fatalities and their relation to cell phone use and texting volume. Their published results indicate that:
“After declining from 1999 to 2005, fatalities from distracted driving increased 28% after 2005, rising from 4572 fatalities to 5870 in 2008.
Crashes increasingly involved male drivers driving alone in collisions with roadside obstructions in urban areas.
By use of multivariate analyses, we predicted that increasing texting volumes resulted in more than 16,000 additional road fatalities from 2001 to 2007.” [Click here for the publication]