I heard a report on last-night’s local t.v. news, and then again this morning on the radio, that there was a debate in the Maryland State House over whether to ban texting only while vehicles are in motion or to ban it totally by all drivers, even when their vehicles are stopped at traffic signals.
I’m not sure which positon won, but I hope it’s the former.
If penalties for texting while stopped are the same as penalties for texting while in motion, drivers incur no additional cost of texting while in motion as compared to texting while stopped. So allowing drivers to text while stopped gives them incentives to refrain from texting while their vehicles are moving – that is, gives them incentives to text only when stopped.
Because texting while in motion is more distracting and dangerous than is texting while stopped, it’s wise to penalize only texting while in motion.